Chicago roars back to defeat Washington
Washington, DC (Sports Network) – Chris Duhon tied a career-high with 24
points and added seven assists, as Chicago rallied from a double-digit fourth-
quarter deficit to post a 118-111 win over the Washington Wizards at the MCI
Kirk Hinrich added 22 points, 13 assists and seven rebounds while Luol Deng
contributed 21 points and 12 boards for the Bulls, who closed the game with a
16-0 run. Darius Songaila had 15 points, which included going a perfect 5-of-5
from the foul line, in the win.
Gilbert Arenas poured in a game-high 42 points for the Wizards, who have
dropped three of their last four games. Arenas, who also had seven assists,
was 11-of-22 from the field and 16-of-20 from the foul line.
“He’s done anything and everything possible to get it done for us,” said
Washington’s Antawn Jamison of Arenas. “He’s doing it all. We need to support
Jamison, Brendan Haywood and Caron Butler all scored 16 points in the loss.
Jamison also had 12 rebounds.
With the game tied after three quarters, Washington began the fourth with a
20-7 surge, as Butler scored eight points while Arenas and Jamison each netted
five. The Wizards hit eight of their first 11 shots in the stanza and built a
104-91 lead with around 7 1/2 minutes left.
However, Chicago came roaring back in the final minutes.
Trailing 111-102 with 3:06 to go, the Bulls used a commanding 16-0 run to
seize a seven-point lead. During the critical burst, Deng hit a jumper with
1:10 remaining that made it 112-111 and put Chicago ahead for good. Songaila
then added a jumper, and following a Washington turnover, Andres Nocioni hit
two foul shots for a five-point lead.
After another Wizards miss, Songaila put an end to the decisive run by
draining two free throws with 22.7 seconds left.
“We wanted to go smaller because (the Wizards) were breaking us down all over
in penetration, and Gilbert was making tough shots too, so it wasn’t like we
were having breakdowns everywhere,” said Bulls head coach Scott Skiles of his
team’s late rally. “We’ve had some games where we’ve been passive in those
situations, but instead of getting back on our heels we kept attacking and
things worked out for us.”
Washington missed its final six shots and the Wizards were held without a
point over the final 3:06.
“We can’t lose games that we are winning by 12 with four minutes left,” said
Jamison. “No excuses.”
The Bulls shot 55 percent for the game and were 13-of-20 from the foul line,
while the Wizards made 47 percent of their attempts and hit on 34-of-41 free
Chicago trailed 27-22 after one quarter, but came back in the second.
The Bulls opened the frame on a 16-4 spurt, keyed by four points each from
Hinrich, Deng and Eric Piatkowski, and seized a 38-31 lead with around seven
minutes left in the half.
Hinrich’s bucket moments later extended the lead to 10 points and Chicago then
grabbed a 53-39 advantage on Mike Sweetney’s basket with just over two
minutes remaining. The Bulls eventually led 56-47 at halftime.
In the opening 24 minutes, Hinrich scored 15 points, while Arenas netted 23
The Wizards clawed back in the third quarter and eventually tied the game on
Arenas’ bucket late in the period. The teams went into the fourth quarter
deadlocked at 84 apiece.
This was a rematch of last year’s first round playoff series, won by
Washington in six games…Duhon also scored 24 on April 16, 2005 against
Atlanta…The Bulls put an end to an eight-game losing streak in Washington.
It was Chicago’s first win in the nation’s capital since April 11, 2001…The
Wizards had a season-high 22 turnovers.