FINAL FROM THE UNITED CENTER:
Bulls 110, Spurs 109 (Bulls: 19-30, 11-15 at home)
LEADING SCORERS: Bulls: LaVine: 23pts. Spurs: DeRozan: 36pts.
LEADING REBOUNDERS: Bulls: Bulls: Kornet: 9. Spurs: Poeltl: 13.
LEADING ASSISTS: Bulls: Dunn: 8. Spurs: Forbes: 5.
STAT OF THE NIGHT: Jakob Poeltl had a terrific game of 16 points and 13 rebounds but failed to execute at crunch time as Jim Boylen twice elected to intentionally foul him. Poeltl, a 55% percent free-throw shooter, proceeded to go 1-4 before Head Coach Greg Popovich replaced him with Rudy Gay.
2ND STAT OF THE NIGHT: The Bulls dished out 28 assists and committed only 12 turnovers.
RECAP: It was a very difficult and emotional start at the United Center as everyone connected with the game itself felt out of sync, still trying to process the sudden and tragic death of Kobe Bryant. Both teams took violations to start the game of 8 and 24 seconds violations respectively. Bryant wore numbers 8 and 24 during his career.
Zach LaVine scored 14 of his 23 points in the fourth quarter including two free throws with two seconds remaining. DeMar DeRozan was fabulous but missed the second of a two-shot foul that would have sent the game into OT.
The Bulls had seven players score in double figures including Denzel Valentine with contributed 16 points off the bench.
UP NEXT: At Indiana Wednesday to start a three-game road trip.
24 SECONDS NBA NEWS AND NOTES:
"Game of the Night" Houston 126, Utah 117: Eric Gordon went off, scoring a career-high 50 points. He became the first Rockets player other than James Harden to score 50 points in a game since Hakeem Olajuwon. This was a big-time road win for the Rockets.
Miami 113, Orlando 92: Bam Adebayo recorded his third triple-double of the season. The Heat improved to 13-0 at home against Eastern Conference opponents.
Cleveland 115, Detroit 100: The Cavs snapped a seven-game losing streak.
Dallas 107, OKC 97: Luka Doncic had 29 points and 11 rebounds.
Sacramento 133, Minnesota 129 OT: Buddy Hield scored a career-high 42 points as the Kings rallied from a 27 point deficit. The Kings outscored Minnesota 33-11 in the final 5:42 of regulation time.
The NBA postponed tonight's Lakers-Clippers game and rescheduled for a future date.
Always a pleasure.