NBA: Josh Giddey, Thunder top skidding Bulls
Josh Giddey tied a season high with 25 points to lead the Oklahoma City Thunder to a 124-110 win over the host Chicago Bulls on Friday.
The Thunder have won five of their last seven, averaging more than 125 points per game during that stretch. The Bulls have lost three consecutive games.
Oklahoma City swept the two meetings between the teams this season.
Giddey, who was one of three Thunder players to score 20 or more points, added 10 rebounds and six assists.
Jalen Williams scored 22 points on 10-of-12 shooting while Shai Gilgeous-Alexander added 21.
It was just the third time this season Gilgeous-Alexander has played but didn’t lead the Thunder in scoring.
The Thunder dominated on both ends of the floor coming up with 12 steals and scoring 64 points in the paint. OKC finished the contest with a 124-110 victory over Chicago.
— OKC THUNDER (@okcthunder) January 14, 2023
After Oklahoma City’s 18-point lead, Williams helped the Thunder hold off the Bulls, scoring nine and hitting all four of his fourth-quarter shots.
The Thunder were 14 of 24 from the floor in the fourth, finishing at 51.1 percent.
Oklahoma City outscored Chicago 64-44 in the paint.
Zach LaVine led the Bulls with 25 points, going 5 of 19 from the field. LaVine was 14 of 15 from the free-throw line. Coby White and Nikola Vucevic added 19 points each.
After the Thunder jumped ahead by 12 by late in the first quarter, the Bulls closed the first with a 13-3 run. Oklahoma City was just 1-for-7 over the final three minutes.
In the second, it was the Thunder who closed strong after the Bulls jumped up by six.
Oklahoma City reeled off a 30-10 run, with Chicago going 4 of 13 from the floor, to jump ahead by 14 just before half.
The Thunder led by 18 early in the third quarter but the Bulls cut the deficit to just one with a 28-11 run over the final 10 minutes.
Patrick Williams scored 11 points as Chicago was 12 of 21 in the third.
The win was the 20th of the season for the Thunder.. Last season, Oklahoma City didn’t win its 20th game until March 2.