FINAL: Cavaliers 114 Bulls 109 (Bulls: 24-45, 15-20 at home)
LEADING SCORERS: Bulls: Valentine: 34 ( career high) Cavs: James: 33.
LEADING REBOUNDERS: Bulls: Portis: 15. Cavaliers: James: 12
LEADING ASSISTS: Bulls: Payne: 10. Cavaliers: James: 12
CCI 24 SECONDS COMMENTARY: Both teams were without a ton of key players (Bulls: Markkanen, LaVine, Dunn, Vonleh, Rolo) and yet the two squads entertained a sellout crowd of nearly 23-thousand fans with long distance three point field goals, slam dunks, block shots and sheer hustle. The Cavs built a 17 point lead only to see Denzel Valentine go off , scoring 17 of his career high 34 points in the third quarter. The game was tied at 105 when Jordan Clarkson came through with a four point play. LeBron James was fabulous and the buzz he creates in NBA arenas in the building is electrifying . James registered his 15th triple -double of the season and his 70th of his career with a 33-13-12 game. He is a remarkable athlete; a true generational player. At the age of 33, there is no slowing down “The King.”
CCI STAT OF THE NIGHT: 34 and 8. Denzel Valentine went for a career high 8 of 11 from beyond the arc. He scored a career high 34.
CCI 2ND STAT OF THE NIGHT: 10. The number of assists by Cam Payne who is comfortably settling in as the Bulls back up point guard. Granted, it’s a small sample size, but Payne is allowing the game to come to him and looking to be a facilitator in addition to knocking down three point field goals. He finished with 13 points 10 assists game in his first start as a Bull and second career start in his 100th NBA game.
PORTIS PRODUCTION: Bobby Ports has the mojo going. He is excelling off the bench. Make it 11 double-doubles this season for BP with a 15-15 game.
FELICIO DOUBLE-DOUBLE: The “Brazilian Bull” started in place of the inactive Robin Lopez and scored 10 points and grabbed 10 rebounds.
UP NEXT: At New York, Monday
NBA NEWS AND NOTES:
Portland 100 Detroit 87. No stopping the Blazers. 12 straight wins.
Make it 21 out of 22 wins for the Rockets. Houston 107 NOLA 101. James Harden 32 points 11 rebounds. The Pelicans have hit a bump, losers of four of the past five games.
The Knicks bench scored a whopping 72 points. Wowza! NY ended a nine game slide with a convincing 124-101 win over Charlotte.
Washington 109 Indiana 102. The on again- off again Wizards are back on.
Milwaukee 122 Atlanta 117. Giannis with a 33-12 game. Make it loss number 50 for the Hawks.
Utah 103 Kings 97. The Jazz have won nine straight and 21 of 23. Seriously? Really? Yes. No fluke. Donovan Mitchell is a bad, bad man. Quinn Snyder is an excellent coach.
Memphis 101 Denver 94. They’re dancing on Beale Street! The Grizzlies long national nightmare is over . They end a 19 game losing streak.
San Antonio 117 Minnesota 101. The Spurs crushed the T-Wolves as LaMarcus Aldridge had 39 points and 10 rebounds. The Spurs won their third straight to move in to fifth place in the Western Conference. Five days ago they were the tenth seed! Jimmy Butler missed his eighth straight game. Kawhi Leonard has not been medically cleared to return according to Spurs Head Coach Greg Popovich.
Golden State 124 Phoenix 109. Will the Suns win another game this season? I’m being serious, here folks.
Brooklyn 114 Mavs 106. That’s all I got.
Congrats to Loyola. Sister Jean, we love you. Chicago has wrapped her arms around the Ramblers’ program! Great win over Tennessee.
Thanks for reading CCI. E mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org or Twitter: @ctsbulls
Always a pleasure!