Chicago, IL (SportsNetwork.com) - Joakim Noah recorded his first triple-double
of the season and fourth of his career, and all five Bulls starters scored in
double figures as Chicago downed the Atlanta Hawks 100-85 on Tuesday.
Noah filled the stat sheet with 17 points, 15 rebounds and 10 assists, and Taj
Gibson continued his improved play with 24 points, 12 boards and five assists
for Chicago, which was coming off a moderately successful 3-3 road trip.
The Bulls held a sizeable 54-23 rebounding advantage and scored at least 100
points for just the second time in the last 11 games.
Paul Millsap led Atlanta with 15 points, Lou Williams chipped in with 13 and
Jeff Teague had 12 in the club's season-high fourth consecutive setback.
The Hawks' sixth straight loss in Chicago can be attributed to a slow start
that put them in a 25-point hole late in the first half.
"Tonight we were battling uphill. It has just been one of those weeks for us,"
Atlanta's Lou Williams said.
They cut the deficit down to 10, 80-70, heading into the fourth quarter by
scoring 14 of the final 18 points in the third, and Mike Scott's 3-pointer
pulled them within 87-79 before a cold stretch sealed the outcome.
Atlanta missed its next seven shots, and two buckets by Gibson around a Mike
Dunleavy jumper pushed Chicago's lead back to 14 points at the midway point.
The closest the Hawks got from there was 11.
Atlanta limped out with a mere 17 points in the first quarter, while Dunleavy
and Gibson combined for 17 themselves. Noah added six points, six rebounds and
six assists as Chicago raced out to a healthy 33-17 cushion.
"Joakim was unbelievable. You get the ball and he can make plays. He makes
great decisions," Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau said.
D.J. Augustin scored nine of his 13 points in the second quarter, with his
third 3-pointer in the frame giving the Bulls their largest lead at 55-30 with
three minutes to go in the half.
Atlanta cut the deficit to 58-39 at the break.
The Bulls have won 11 straight when scoring 96-or-more points ... Gibson came
in averaging 15.8 points and 6.5 rebounds over his previous 11 games ...
Dunleavy (15 points), Jimmy Butler (12) and Kirk Hinrich (10) helped the Bulls
improve to 7-1 when their starters score in double digits ... Millsap had his
streak of 21 straight games with a steal come to an end ... Atlanta's Kyle
Korver extended his NBA record of making at least one deep ball to 119 games.