Saturday , Dec , 31 , 2005 C.Y. Ellis

Bulls start homestand with Suns

(Sports Network) – The Chicago Bulls try to put the brakes on a five-game
losing streak this evening when they start a three-game homestand against the
Phoenix Suns at the United Center.

The Bulls’ latest setback came on Wednesday, as they dropped a 93-80 decision
to the Charlotte Bobcats. Luol Deng scored 18 points while Darius Songaila
netted 12 for Chicago, which has lost six of its last seven.

The five-game slide is Chicago’s longest losing streak since it started last
season with nine straight losses.

Chicago got within eight points at 82-74, but Gerald Wallace’s three-point
play moments later stretched the gap to 11 and the Bulls never threatened
again.

The Bulls lost the game from the foul line, making only 6-of-16 from the
charity stripe, while Charlotte hit on 25-of-31 free throws.

Chicago, which will also host Milwaukee and Seattle on this stand, is 5-7 in
its arena this season.

Phoenix, meanwhile, comes in on a winning note after Eddie House poured in 26
points off the bench, while Steve Nash scored 24 and dished out 13 assists as
the Suns posted a 110-100 road victory over Charlotte.

Shawn Marion racked up 24 points and 13 rebounds, and Boris Diaw and Kurt
Thomas also recorded double-doubles for the Suns, who are now 3-0 on their
current five-game road swing.

Diaw compiled 11 points and 12 boards, while Thomas finished with 10 points
and 12 rebounds.

Phoenix, which will close its trek in New York on Monday, is 8-4 away from
home this season.

The Bulls lost both meetings with the Suns last season, but could have the
advantage tonight, as the home team in this series has won eight of the last
nine meetings. Phoenix is also just 3-9 in its last 12 visits to the Windy
City.

CHI PHO