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NBA FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL --- --- --- --- ----- CHICAGO 24 25 28 33 110 WASHINGTON 30 28 15 30 103 FINAL

HIGH SCORERS: CHI - TONI KUKOC 33, RON ARTEST 19, ELTON BRAND 16 WAS - JUWAN HOWARD 19, MITCH RICHMOND 17, CHRIS WHITNEY 12

HIGH REBOUND: CHI - ELTON BRAND 13, FOUR PLAYERS WITH 4 WAS - MICHAEL SMITH 12, TWO PLAYERS WITH 4

HIGH ASSISTS: CHI - TONI KUKOC 10, RON ARTEST 6 WAS - ROD STRICKLAND 12, CHRIS WHITNEY 6

ATT: 12,223


Extended Box

CHICAGO (110) AT WASHINGTON (103)

CHICAGO REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

BRAND F 35 7-13 2-2 6 7 13 2 4 1 1 16 KUKOC F 39 9-15 14-16 0 2 2 10 1 3 1 33 SIMPKINS C 28 4-8 0-0 0 4 4 2 6 0 4 8 ARMSTRONG G 33 5-6 2-2 0 1 1 4 1 0 4 14 ARTEST G 37 8-14 1-2 0 2 2 6 3 3 3 19 MALONEY 16 2-3 0-0 0 0 0 1 4 0 1 5 C BENJAMIN 25 5-8 0-0 1 3 4 2 2 0 3 11 RUFFIN 12 1-2 2-5 1 3 4 0 2 1 1 4 PERDUE 15 0-0 0-0 1 3 4 0 0 0 0 0 ANSTEY DNP - COACH'S DECISION BROWN DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 41-69 21-27 9 25 34 27 23 8 18 110 (.594) (.778) TEAM REBS: 11 TOTAL TO: 20(21 PTS)

WASHINGTON REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

HOWARD F 30 9-12 1-3 0 1 1 1 5 1 1 19 SMITH F 31 3-4 4-4 6 6 12 1 3 0 2 10 J WHITE C 17 3-4 1-2 2 2 4 0 2 0 3 7 RICHMOND G 35 6-17 3-4 1 1 2 2 3 1 2 17 STRICKLAND G 35 3-11 1-4 1 3 4 12 1 3 3 7 HAMILTON 16 3-9 1-4 0 0 0 2 1 0 0 7 A WILLIAMS 21 3-4 2-2 0 0 0 0 2 0 1 8 KING 16 3-4 0-0 0 0 0 0 4 1 2 6 T MURRAY 22 3-5 1-1 1 2 3 1 6 0 0 8 C WHITNEY 14 3-4 3-3 0 0 0 6 2 1 1 12 JORDAN 3 1-1 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 2 AUSTIN DNP - STREP THROAT

TOTALS 240 40-75 17-27 11 15 26 25 29 8 15 103 (.533) (.630) TEAM REBS: 8 TOTAL TO: 15(23 PTS)

CHICAGO 24 25 28 33 - 110 WASHINGTON 30 28 15 30 - 103

BLOCKED SHOTS: CHICAGO - KUKOC 2, ARTEST, BRAND, C BENJAMIN. WASHINGTON - SMITH 3, HOWARD, STRICKLAND, A WILLIAMS, J WHITE. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: CHICAGO 7-15 (.467), KUKOC 1-2, ARMSTRONG 2-2, ARTEST 2-6, MALONEY 1-2, C BENJAMIN 1-3. WASHINGTON 6-13 (.462), RICHMOND 2-5, HAMILTON 0-2, T MURRAY 1-2, C WHITNEY 3-4. TECHNICALS: CHICAGO - ASSISTANT COACH TEDESCHI, SIMPKINS, WASHINGTON - DELAY OF GAME. OFFICIALS: JACK NIES, RONNIE NUNN, MARC DAVIS. A - 12,223. T - 2:17.


Box Score

CHICAGO (110) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Brand 35 7-13 2-2 6-13 2 4 16 Kukoc 39 9-15 14-16 0-2 10 1 33 Simpkins 28 4-8 0-0 0-4 2 6 8 Armstrong 33 5-6 2-2 0-1 4 1 14 Artest 37 8-14 1-2 0-2 6 3 19 Maloney 16 2-3 0-0 0-0 1 4 5 C Benjamin 25 5-8 0-0 1-4 2 2 11 Ruffin 12 1-2 2-5 1-4 0 2 4 Perdue 15 0-0 0-0 1-4 0 0 0 Anstey DNP - coach's decision Brown DNP - coach's decision _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 41-69 21-27 9-34 27 23 110 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.594, FT-.778. 3-Point Goals: 7-15, .467 (Kukoc 1-2, Armstrong 2-2, Artest 2-6, Maloney 1-2, C Benjamin 1-3). Team rebounds: 11. Blocked shots: 5 (Kukoc 2, Artest, Brand, C Benjamin). Turnovers: 20 (Armstrong 4, Simpkins 4, Artest 3, C Benjamin 3, Brand, Kukoc, Maloney, Ruffin). Steals: 8 (Artest 3, Kukoc 3, Brand, Ruffin).

WASHINGTON (103) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp Howard 30 9-12 1-3 0-1 1 5 19 Smith 31 3-4 4-4 6-12 1 3 10 J White 17 3-4 1-2 2-4 0 2 7 Richmond 35 6-17 3-4 1-2 2 3 17 Strickland 35 3-11 1-4 1-4 12 1 7 Hamilton 16 3-9 1-4 0-0 2 1 7 A Williams 21 3-4 2-2 0-0 0 2 8 King 16 3-4 0-0 0-0 0 4 6 T Murray 22 3-5 1-1 1-3 1 6 8 C Whitney 14 3-4 3-3 0-0 6 2 12 Jordan 3 1-1 0-0 0-0 0 0 2 Austin DNP - strep throat _______________________________________________ TOTALS 240 40-75 17-27 11-26 25 29 103 _______________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.533, FT-.630. 3-Point Goals: 6-13, .462 (Richmond 2-5, Hamilton 0-2, T Murray 1-2, C Whitney 3-4). Team rebounds: 8. Blocked shots: 7 (Smith 3, Howard, Strickland, A Williams, J White). Turnovers: 15 (J White 3, Strickland 3, King 2, Richmond 2, Smith 2, A Williams, C Whitney, Howard). Steals: 8 (Strickland 3, C Whitney, Howard, Jordan, King, Richmond). ____________________________________________ Chicago 24 25 28 33 - 110 Washington 30 28 15 30 - 103 ____________________________________________ Technical fouls: Chicago 2 (Assistant Coach Tedeschi, 8:06 3rd; Simpkins, 4:22 4th). Washington 1 (Delay Of Game, 8:06 3rd). Flagrant fouls: None. A: 12,223. T: 2:17. Officials: Jack Nies, Ronnie Nunn, Marc Davis.


Game Story

WASHINGTON (Ticker) -- With the help of Toni Kukoc and the Washington Wizards, the Chicago Bulls have a two-game winning streak.

Kukoc had season highs of 33 points and 10 assists and the Bulls used a second-half surge to defeat the Wizards, 110-103, for the second time in as many games and notch their first road win of the season.

Prior to Wednesday, the Bulls were just 2-24 with 11 straight losses and Kukoc was on the sidelines with back spasms. But Chicago's best player returned to spark a 77-66 home victory over Washington and did it again tonight.

"We really felt like he would be rusty," Bulls coach Tim Floyd said of Kukoc, who started only six of 30 games this season. "We knew we had the ability to come back and play games like this, but we thought he would be rusty because he hasn't played competitively in almost seven weeks.

"We've had three practices, but his conditioning is what has been very surprising. He's been able to play extended minutes. Ten assists and one turnover tonight might get hidden in the 33 points, but he had a terrific floor game."

The versatile 6-11 forward from Croatia, one of the few players remaining from Chicago's dynasty, made 9-of-15 shots and 14-of-16 free throws to help the Bulls eclipse 100 points for the first time this season.

"I feel fine," Kukoc said. "My back hasn't given me any problems during the games. Sometimes the legs get heavy, but that's just from being out of basketball-playing shape, so I'm not complaining."

Coming in with a league-low field-goal mark of 40 percent, the Bulls shot 59 percent (41-of-69) as they ended a 15-game road losing streak.

Chicago still has the NBA's worst record but the unofficial title of worst team may now belong to Washington (11-22), which has accounted for half of Chicago's wins. The Wizards were beaten on the boards, 34-26, by the NBA's worst rebounding team.

"They haven't scored 100 points all year and they went and scored 110 tonight," Wizards coach Gar Heard said. "I don't know who is the worst team, them or us. They beat us two times in a row now. We are not focused.

"We've got to be prepared to play. I never know from one night to the next who's going to show up. But we're going to be prepared. I thought the Wednesday night game would be a wakeup call, so I just don't know."

Kukoc also sent Wizards leading scorer and top defender Juwan Howard to the bench with four fouls just 21 seconds into the third quarter,

"He's inspired our team, particularly our older guys, who for the first two months of the season were looking up and seeing three rookies, a second-year player and a veteran on the floor," Floyd said. "Just knowing that we've got some experience has really helped. It's not coincidental that we're 2-0 since he's come back."

Rookie Elton Brand recorded his second consecutive double-double with 16 points and 13 rebounds and rookie Ron Artest added 19 points, six assists and three steals for the Bulls.

"It feels good to get this first road win and it was great for Toni to take the load off me offensively," Brand said. "It's great to get easy buckets by cutting and slashing and playing `D' and rebounding. I love that role."

B.J. Armstrong followed his 3-pointer with another jumper for a 66-66 tie with 7:12 remaining in the third quarter, capping a 17-8 run by the Bulls to open the second half.

After Corey Benjamin and Artest sandwiched buckets around a short jumper by Washington rookie Richard Hamilton, Armstrong knocked down another 3-pointer for a 77-71 lead with 1:08 left and struck a pose toward Kukoc on the bench.

"That was a big basket for us," Armstrong said. "Toni was out, and I knew if we could maintain the lead and hold our composure until he got back -- so I was just pointing to Toni to let him know that we were working to help out as best we could.

"You can see how valuable Toni is and what he brings to the table. He's one of those special players who can score and pass and do a lot of things for your team."

Artest opened the fourth quarter with a 3-pointer. After Chris Whitney's 3-pointer, Kukoc followed four consecutive free throws with a 3-pointer, giving Chicago an 86-76 lead with 9:30 remaining.

Matt Maloney, signed by the Bulls earlier in the day, scored five points down the stretch and Corey Benjamin made a layup and a huge 3-pointer to give the Bulls a 96-85 lead with six minutes to go.

Howard scored 19 points and Mitch Richmond added 17 for the Wizards, who were without reserve center Isaac Austin (strep throat).

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