On Saturday night, a shorthanded Chicago Bulls team took on the Detroit Pistons at the United Center. In the end, the Bulls’ offensive struggles led to a 92-75 loss, ending their 14-game home winning streak to the Pistons.
As if the injuries to Derrick Rose (meniscus), Jimmy Butler (turf toe) and Mike James (MCL) weren’t enough, a sore achilles held Luol Deng out of the game. Taj Gibson took his place in the starting lineup.
Just as the front court dominated in the Bulls’ last game against the Miami Heat, they started off the game in the same manner. Carlos Boozer and Gibson combined to score all 17 of Chicago’s first points. Joakim Noah even added three rebounds and two assists during the 17-point stretch. However, Detroit called a timeout afterwards that ended up serving them well.
In the later half of the first period, the Bulls struggled to score. They made only three shots after the early domination from Boozer and Gibson. Mike Dunleavy and Marquis Teague stepped up in the second quarter though, where the duo combined for 12 points. At the same time, the Pistons were able to keep up. They trailed Chicago for the majority of the game, but a 15-point half from Brandon Jennings allowed for a 47-47 tie game at halftime.
The real trouble for the Bulls came in the third quarter when they scored a total of nine points. That’s right. Nine. Turnovers kept Chicago in the mix for a bit, but eventually, their inability to score caught up with them.
At the start of the fourth quarter, the Bulls were able to cut down their deficit to 11 points, but right after that, the offensive drought fell upon them yet again. There just never was a good rhythm going on offensively, let alone any sort of rhythm. The scoring struggles are evident through Chicago’s 33.3% field goal percentage. To make things worse, they were even out-rebounded 51-44.
Gibson led the team in scoring with 21 points along with 10 rebounds to complete the double-double. Dunleavy came off the bench and added 16 points, six rebounds and four assists.
This loss gives the Bulls a record of 8-10, and their next chance to change it will come on Tuesday, Dec. 10 when they face the Milwaukee Bucks at 7 p.m. central.