It was the Atlanta Hawks that entered Friday night's match up vs. the Chicago Bulls on the final night of a back-to-back-to-back, but it was the Chicago Bulls who played like it. The Hawks jumped out to a 15-point first quarter lead, and the Bulls never really came close to taking it back, getting outscored in all three quarters except the fourth.
Chicago enjoyed a good game from its bench, but it was the starting five that was uniformly lackluster. As far as the former goes, the Bulls received 13 points from Kyle Korver, 16 points from John Lucas, 11 points from Taj Gibson and 12 points from Jimmy Butler. But none of that was enough to make up for the performances of the starting five, which included eight points, six assists, four rebounds and five turnovers from Derrick Rose, 4-13 shooting from Luol Deng and one point and four rebounds from Joakim Noah. The best of the bunch was Carlos Boozer, who finished with 12 points and five rebounds, though those numbers look even thinner next to his -39 plus-minus on the night, which edged out Rose's -33 for worst amongst Bulls.
The Bulls will take Sunday off before returning home Monday Jan. 9 to host the Detroit Pistons.
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