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NBA -- ​Hornets crush depleted Bulls, 108-91


PhilBoxing.com




CHARLOTTE --- ​A road-weary and ​injury​-​plagued Chicago Bulls ​​played without three key scorers ​on Monday night and proved no match against a healthier Charlotte Hornets​​ on Monday night at the Time Warner Cable Arena.

The home team dominated from the opening tip and cruised to ​an easy 108-91 ​victory.

Chicago was already without Jimmy Butler (knee) and Nikolai Mirotic (appendicitis), Derrick Rose was a late scratch due to body soreness according to coach Fred Hoiberg. "He was not moving well at shootaround this morning. That's when we started thinking about it. The decision was made not to play him tonight."

The Hornets hit 5 triples early and raced to a 38-20 lead at the end of the first quarter and were never seriously threatened. Kemba Walker had another dominant performance and led all scorers with 30 points, his eight 30+ points this season. The dynamic point guard also added 8 assists and 7 rebounds. " We wanted to get off to fast start. Not necessarily build a huge lead but play with energy and intensity from the start of the game."

The lead increased to 25 in the middle of the third quarter and the Bulls tried desperately to mount a rally but never got closer than 12.





Charlotte's Nic Batum, fully recovered from a toe injury, narrowly missed a triple double for the second straight game. He finished with 19 points, 13 boards and 8 assists. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist also had a great game, the defensive specialist tallied 20 points and 7 rebounds. Off the bench, Spencer Hawes contributed 13 points and 8 rebounds before fouling out.

The win puts the Hornets (26-26) at the .500 mark and only half game behind the eight seed Detroit Pistons in the Eastern Conference.

The (27-24) Bulls who never led in the game dropped their third outing in a row. "We need to put this trip behind us", Bulls coach Hoiberg said." Four games in six days, in four different time zones. It took a toll on our guys."

Pau Gasol paced the Bulls with 22 points,10 rebounds and 7 assists. "We didn't make them uncomfortable enough, make them take tougher shots. We put ourselves in a hole early. We fought back, but it was too big of a hole to get out of."

The Hornets outrebounded the Bulls 56-41. They also had an advantage in free throws, they made 24-of-31 while Bulls only made 11-of-14.


Click here to view a list of other articles written by Eric Biasbas.


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