QUICK STATS: Bulls 91, Atlanta 86. Bulls (1-3, 1-1 at home) Hawks 1-4. ( 1-4 road) 3 Bulls recorded double- doubles: Holiday, Markkanen, Nwaba.
Leading scorers: Bulls: Lopez- 16 points, Nwaba- 15 points, Markkanen: 14 points. Hawks: Belinelli: 23points
Leading rebounder: Bulls: Markkanen 12, Nwaba 11, Holiday-10. Hawks: Dedmon and Muscala each with 10.
CCI STAT OF THE GAME: Bulls with 62 rebounds.
CCI GAME BALL: David Nwaba , playing in his 24th NBA game,registered his 1st career double- double of 15 points-11 rebounds and was terrific on defense.
PLAY OF THE GAME: Lauri Markkanen received a pass from Jerian Grant and nailed a 3 point field goal from 26 feet with 49 seconds left to preserve the win.
INSIDE THE LOCKER ROOM:
Nwaba on his 1st career double- double: "It was a great feeling. I stayed ready when my name was called and I came out aggressive. I pushed in transition, grabbed rebounds in transition and made sure to do that today and attacked the basket.”
CHUCK’S TAKE: Here’s what I loved about this game. The Bulls couldn’t hit a three. They struggled most of the game ( 22% on 7 of 32) but the Bulls saved saved their best for last with Markkanen nailing a huge triple with 49 seconds left to give the Bulls a 90-86 lead. At one point, Markkanen was 1-7 behind the arc so he elected to go to the rim on three straight trips. That tells me something. He’s smart and he plays with poise. The Bulls entered the game last in free throw attempts just under fourteen per game. They went to line 29 times last night shooting 76%. Led by Robin Lopez, the Bulls outscored Atlanta 46-20 in the paint. Denzel Valentine started for the injured Paul Zipser and while Valentine didn’t shoot the ball particularly well he did score 11 points, pull down 9 rebounds, 5 assists - 2 steals in 36 minutes.
UP NEXT: Bulls host OKC Saturday. 7PM CT.
NBA NEWS AND NOTES: After calling a Bulls game it takes me a good 2-3 hours to unwind..so I grab a sandwich and watch more hoops. I was not disappointed last night watching two Western Conference thrillers....
DeMarcus Cousins returned to Sac-town in a Pelicans uniform and was spectacular. With Anthony Davis sidelined, Cousins was a one man wrecking crew at the expense of his old club. 41 points —23 rebounds- 6 assists in 43 minutes. The last NBA player to post those number was Chris Webber who called the game with Marv Albert on TNT. The Pels beat the Kings 114-106. A side note..I like the Kings young core....then again they’ve been in the lottery year after year so it’s time they’ve turned the corner.
Blake Griffin hit a left wing 3 ball at the buzzer as the Clippers beat Portland..great NBA game.. I was on the edge of my seat. Griffin’s line: 25-8-5. He had 16 in the 4th quarter. Make no mistake about it..Griffin is the leader on this club and is ready to assume that role now that Chris Paul is in Houston.
A replica of the MECCA floor in Milwaukee.. where’s Brian Winters when we need him......Celtics beat the Bucks - Irving with a 24 points 7 assists game.
Mike Conley is a winner. He’s grown on me so much throughout the years. A 22 point game last night as the Memphis handed Dallas its fifth loss in six games.
Love the NBA.
Thanks for reading CCI! E mail me at email@example.com or Twitter: @ctsbulls.
Always a pleasure !