National Basketball Association
Phoenix at Chicago
When: 8:00 PM ET, Saturday, February 22, 2020
Where: United Center, Chicago, Illinois
The Chicago Bulls are suffering through their longest losing streak of the season, a seven-game slide they'll try to snap Saturday against Phoenix. The Bulls came out of the All-Star break with a 103-93 loss to Charlotte on Thursday in the opener of a four-game homestand.
Thaddeus Young scored a season-high 22 points and hauled in 11 rebounds in the loss as injury-riddled Chicago was unable to survive with just nine available players. "We have definitely made progress defensively with our system and in what we do this season," coach Jim Boylen told reporters Friday at practice. "That has been hijacked a little bit by injuries, but we're still a good, hard-playing defensive team. We've improved our running game. ... Even though we're on a losing streak, we're still playing hard, aggressive basketball." The Suns opened a three-game road trip with a 118-101 loss at Toronto on Friday. Phoenix made 6-of-34 3-pointers while losing its fifth in a row on the road. TIME:
8 p.m. ET. TV:
FS Arizona, NBCS ChicagoABOUT THE SUNS (22-34):
All-Star guard Devin Booker scored 21 points while handing out eight assists in 34 turnover-free minutes Friday night, but he had a minus-24 rating, easily the worst on the team. Center Deandre Ayton chipped in 17 points and 10 rebounds in his first game back from an ankle injury that cost him two games. Forward Kelly Oubre Jr. continued a shooting slump that began in the final three contests before the break, as the 24-year-old is 6-of-27 from long range over a four-game stretch. ABOUT THE BULLS (19-37):
Defense was the primary issue in the six straight losses prior to the All-Star break as Chicago gave up an average of 124.3 points per game, and the offensive attack was lacking in the loss to the Hornets. Guard Zach LaVine, the team's leading scorer at 25.2 points per game, finished with 19 points while making 1-of-7 3-pointers against the Hornets after scoring a total of 73 while hitting 13-of-21 from beyond the arc in the two games prior to the break. "We have a lot of season left," LaVine told reporters after the loss. "You've got to stay locked in. This is our job. This is a dream job. This is something that millions of people wish they could do - good or bad. It's a tough situation. Nobody likes being in a losing situation. But you get to see who's fighting with you and who's not. Go out there and battle."BUZZER BEATERS
1. Bulls G Tomas Satoransky has 23 assists against four turnovers over his last three games.
2. Suns PG Ricky Rubio had nine assists and a season high-tying four steals at Toronto on Friday.
3. LaVine averaged 23 points and 6.5 assists to lead Chicago to a sweep of last season's two meetings.PREDICTION:
Bulls 118, Suns 115
Stats and Records