Bulls (6-7) 92, Bucks 93 (7-5)
The Bulls got off to a bit of a slow start tonight, allowing the Bucks to grab an early 9-4 lead. Insert "this is the NBA and leads don't matter" verbiage here, but when the first quarter ended the Bulls were up 26-19. Powered by 16 combined points from Hinrich and Hamilton, the Bulls were able to jump out to a lead despite shooting poorly. The Bulls grabbed 6 ORB in the first quarter and into the early stages of the second--one from each of the starters save Hinrich and a pair from Butler-- to mitigate the relatively cold start from the field.
However, on the not so bright side the Bucks were doing work on the offensive glass themselves; 15 minutes into the game, they had 7 ORB.They came in averaging just over 11 offensive boards per game.
As the second quarter went along, the Bulls D began to tighten quite a bit. The Bucks had a hard time getting through on the dribble, resulting in some bad shots and turnovers that the Bulls converted into points (e.g. the kickout to Rip off the Milwaukee turnover for an easy breakaway layup).
As expected, Boozer didn't come out with the same shooting touch he had on Saturday, starting 3/9 from the field through almost two quarters of play. He was able to contribute in other ways, with 3 boards, an assist and a steal.
Monta Ellis in particular was pressured and harried on the perimeter throughout the first half, and Brandon Jennings didn't fare much better. Combined, the tandem shot 5-13 in the first half, good for just 11 of Milwaukee's 40 first half points.
Halftime Stats (Bulls 50, Bucks 40)Bucks:
Team PPP (points per possession)--0.86
- Ellis: 3-7, 7 points, 2 assists
- Jennings: 2-6, 3 assists, 4 points
- Henson: 5-8, 11 points
- Hamilton: 7-10, 17 points
- Hinrich: 2-5 (6-7 FTM-A), 10 points, 3 assists
- Boozer: 3-9, 7 points, 5 rebounds