Wed, 26 Feb 2020

LaVine's free throws lift Bulls over Spurs

Field Level Media
28 Jan 2020, 15:19 GMT+10

Zach LaVine hit a pair of go-ahead free throws with 2.1 seconds remaining to cap a 23-point effort, and reserve guard Denzel Valentine added 16 points to lift the host Chicago Bulls to a 110-109 victory over the San Antonio Spurs on Monday night.

San Antonio's DeMar DeRozan missed the second of two free throws with 0.2 seconds remaining and missed a put-back try at the buzzer as the Spurs lost their third straight game.

Chicago relied on seven double-figure scorers to earn successive wins for the first time since Dec. 18-21. LaVine scored 14 points in the final 12 minutes to help the Bulls erase an 11-point deficit.

DeRozan scored 36 points and grabbed 10 rebounds while Patty Mills added 25 points off the bench for the Spurs. San Antonio was playing without forward LaMarcus Aldridge, who was sidelined because of a sprained right thumb.

The Bulls prevailed in a wild finish. DeRozan hit a jumper over Kris Dunn with 8.6 seconds left to tie the score at 108, but LaVine drew a foul against Jakob Poeltl on Chicago's next possession and sank both free throws.

Dunn fouled DeRozan when the Spurs got the ball back, but DeRozan hit only 1 of 2 foul shots. The Spurs were just 23 for 34 (67.6 percent) from the line for the game.

Poeltl notched 16 points and 13 rebounds while Trey Lyles chipped in 10 points for San Antonio.

Thaddeus Young and Tomas Satoransky added 13 points apiece for the Bulls. Luke Kornet (12 points), Coby White (11) and Dunn (10) rounded out a balanced attack.

Valentine, who has spent much of the season in coach Jim Boylen's doghouse -- and therefore out of Chicago's regular rotation -- contributed four rebounds and three assists while shooting 6 of 10 from the field and tying his season high for scoring. Young and Kornet both grabbed nine rebounds.

San Antonio yielded six points in the final 41.9 seconds of the second quarter as Chicago took a 50-48 lead into halftime. Satoransky capped the Bulls' spurt with a steal and layup at the buzzer.

The Spurs led by as many as 11 points in the first half while limiting LaVine to four points on 1-for-8 shooting. Mills led all scorers with 12 points at the break.

San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich told reporters before the game that Aldridge did not travel with the team, remaining in San Antonio after sustaining the thumb injury Sunday during the team's 110-106 loss to the Raptors. Aldridge contributed 10 points and 10 rebounds against Toronto for his team-high 12th double-double.

Monday marked the third game Aldridge has missed this season. He was sidelined due to right thigh soreness in early December.

The teams are set to conclude the season series March 20 in San Antonio.

--Field Level Media

Sign up for Chicago News

a daily newsletter full of things to discuss over drinks.and the great thing is that it's on the house!