FINAL FROM THE UNITED CENTER: Dallas 103, Bulls 98. (Bulls: 4-10, 2-6 at home)
LEADING SCORERS: Bulls: LaVine: 26. Dallas: Barnes: 23.
LEADING REBOUNDERS: Bulls: Carter Jr.: 10. Dallas: Jordan: 16.
LEADING ASSISTS: Bulls: Arcidiacono: 6. Dallas: Barea: 5.
CCI RECAP: For the second straight game the Bulls failed to hit the 100 point club. The Bulls at times played iso ball and when shots weren't falling, it gave the Mavs an opportunity to pick up a point or two down the stretch. The Mavs bench was fantastic and keyed the win. Zach LaVine didn't shoot the ball particularly well but still managed to pour in 26, his 14th straight game of 20+ to start a season. There is an enormous amount of pressure on Zach to generate offense and others must step forward to lift some of the burden while staying in a team system of passing, cutting, using your post player.
CCI GAME BALLS: Bulls: LaVine, Hutchison (9 points - 9 rebounds - solid D) Mavs: Barnes, Jordan and the entire Dallas bench.
CCI STAT OF THE NIGHT: The Mavs bench came to life scoring 44 points.
CCI QUICK NOTES: Dallas Head Coach Rick Carlisle was very complimentary of Bulls rookie Wendell Carter Jr. Had the Mavs not traded up to get Luka Doncic in a swap with the Hawks for Trae Young, Carlisle indicated they would have selected Wendell at five.
UP NEXT: At Boston Wednesday.
CCI 24 SECONDS - NBA NEWS AND NOTES
New Orleans 126, Toronto 110: Anthony Davis invaded Canada and came away with a bag of Tim Hortons along with 25 points and 20 boards. Didn't see this one coming.
Philadelphia 124, Miami 114: Joel Embiid with a 35-14 game. Jimmy Butler's press conference will be held today at the 76ers practice site in Camden, NJ. Dwayne Wade missed his fourth straight game because of the birth of his daughter. He will miss the next three as well.
Minnesota 120, Brooklyn 113: The Nets lost leading scorer Caris LeVert with a gruesome right leg injury.
Washington 117, Orlando 109: Back to back wins for the Wizards! Wall and Beal combined for 46 points.
Utah 96, Memphis 88: The Jazz won their third straight as Rudy Gobert scored 15 points and grabbed 16 rebounds.
OKC 118, Phoenix 101: Can anyone help the Suns? The Thunder scored 22 straight points in the first quarter holding Phoenix scoreless for seven minutes. The Suns are 2-11.
Sacramento 104, San Antonio 99: Willie Cauley-Stein is ballin... another double-double of 13 points and 13 rebounds. The Kings are 8-6.
Los Angeles Clippers 121, Golden State 116: Kevin Durant fouled out for only the 5th time in his career, and first as a Warrior. Durant's like: 33-11-10, 1 steal, 2 blocks. Steph Curry sidelined with a groin injury. Lou Williams went 14-14 from the line for LAC.
After the Bulls-Mavs ballgame as I was walking out of the United Center I came across Lauri Markkanen and Dirk Nowitzki. It was a great opportunity for a photo opportunity considering this could be Dirk's last visit to the UC as an active player. He has played all 21 years in a Dallas uniform, an NBA record, and only he knows whether he'll play next year. He remains sidelined with an ankle issue. I asked both Dirk and Lauri if they'd agree to a picture and both endorsed the idea. One is headed to the Hall of Fame… the other is destined for stardom and may join him in Springfield, MA one day. Both are class individuals and it's the circle of life in the NBA.