Bulls hit new low in 115-106 loss to Magic

                                                                                                                                                                                                   
  • Bulls center Nikola Vucevic, center, shoots as Orlando Magic forward Chuma Okeke, left, and center Wendell Carter Jr. defend during the second half in Chicago, Wednesday. The Bulls lost 115-106.

    Bulls center Nikola Vucevic, center, shoots as Orlando Magic forward Chuma Okeke, left, and center Wendell Carter Jr. defend during the second half in Chicago, Wednesday. The Bulls lost 115-106. Associated Press

 
By ANDREW SELIGMAN
AP Sports Writer
Updated 4/14/2021 11:38 PM

James Ennis scored 22 points, Wendell Carter Jr. added 19 points and 12 rebounds, and the Orlando Magic snapped a six-game losing streak by beating the Bulls 115-106 on Wednesday night despite big performances by Zach LaVine and Nikola Vucevic.

The Magic outscored the Bulls by 20 in the third quarter to turn a one-point lead into a 93-72 advantage and hung on after the Bulls cut it to 104-98. Carter scored on a tip-in and Michael Carter-Williams dunked after stealing a pass from LaVine to make it a 10-point game with 3:12 remaining.

 

"I felt like we were due for a win," Ennis said.

LaVine scored 30. Vucevic had 29 points and 11 rebounds in his first game against the Magic since they dealt the two-time All-Star to the Bulls at the deadline. But the Bulls fell to 3-8 since the trade.

Ennis shot 5 of 6 from 3-point range. He also scored 12 points in the third.

Carter, acquired in the Vucevic trade, came up big in his first game against the team that drafted him with the No. 7 overall pick in 2018. For him, that deal was "absolutely" a chance for a fresh start.

"Being in Orlando, it's an opportunity for me to showcase my game, an opportunity for me to show that I impact winning," Carter said. "It's a huge opportunity for me coming to Orlando. I'm gonna do everything I can to flourish."

Gary Harris and Carter-Williams scored 15 apiece for the Magic.

Vucevic, who played 8 1/2 seasons with the Magic, made five 3-pointers to finish one shy of his career high.

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LaVine scored 21 in the fourth quarter. Daniel Theis finished with 16 points, but the Bulls dropped their fourth in a row.

"Guys are frustrated," LaVine said. "We know we're better and we're supposed to be beating some of these teams. Everybody wants a win. We went on a little winning streak and then we reverted back down to losing. Guys get frustrated. You'd rather have guys frustrated than not. But frustration has to turn into something on the court and we have to put it together sooner than later. ... If we're talking a big game, we have to go out there and walk it, too."

Vucevic clearly came to play against his former team, scoring 16 in the first half. He nailed all four 3s, hitting one on the game's opening possession and burying a buzzer beater to cut it to 54-53 after Chicago trailed by as much as 12.

But the Magic dominated Chicago 39-19 in the third with Ennis making three 3s in the period.

"We made a huge run in the third quarter," Carter said. "We got up by 20 and we understood that their offensive players were gonna take and make big shots down the stretch. We weathered their run and we made great adjustments."

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