Bulls can't run with Warriors for all four quarters

                                                                                                                                                                                                   
  • Golden State Warriors' Klay Thompson (11) shoots between Chicago Bulls' Kris Dunn (32) and Justin Holiday, right, during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Jan. 17, 2018, in Chicago. The Warriors won 119-112.

    Golden State Warriors' Klay Thompson (11) shoots between Chicago Bulls' Kris Dunn (32) and Justin Holiday, right, during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Jan. 17, 2018, in Chicago. The Warriors won 119-112. Associated Press

  • Chicago Bulls' Kris Dunn gets upside down after a dunk over Golden State Warriors' Stephen Curry during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Jan. 17, 2018, in Chicago. The Warriors won 119-112. Dunn was injured on the play.

    Chicago Bulls' Kris Dunn gets upside down after a dunk over Golden State Warriors' Stephen Curry during the second half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, Jan. 17, 2018, in Chicago. The Warriors won 119-112. Dunn was injured on the play. Associated Press

  • Chicago Bulls' Kris Dunn is treated by the medical staff after hitting his face on the floor after a dunk during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Golden State Warriors Wednesday, Jan. 17, 2018, in Chicago. The Warriors won 119-112.

    Chicago Bulls' Kris Dunn is treated by the medical staff after hitting his face on the floor after a dunk during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Golden State Warriors Wednesday, Jan. 17, 2018, in Chicago. The Warriors won 119-112. Associated Press

 
 
Updated 1/17/2018 10:48 PM

The Bulls sure had fun playing the high-scoring style of the NBA's best team on Wednesday.

In reality, though. the Bulls are still beginners and the Golden State Warriors are the masters. The Bulls opened an 11-point lead in the second quarter, then seemed to look up and realize the finish line was still a long way down the road.

 

Golden State caught up quickly, overpowered the Bulls with a 19-0 run in the third quarter and held on for a 119-112 win at the United Center.

The Warriors (37-9) tied a franchise record with their 14th straight road win. Klay Thompson scored a season-high 38 points and couldn't miss in the third quarter. Steph Curry added 30 points for the defending champs.

"I think it was good for our team to be able to go through times like that," Bulls guard Justin Holiday said. "I felt like we obviously gave (the fans) a good show, just wish it would have turned out differently."

With the Bulls trying to make a late comeback, point guard Kris Dunn came up with a steal at midcourt, went in for a breakaway dunk and lost his balance as he hit the rim. Dunn ended up hitting the court face-first and his mouth was bleeding badly as he rolled over.

Dunn stood up after a few minutes on the ground and walked to the locker room. Teammate Zach LaVine said he saw Dunn after the game and he seemed to be doing well. Coach Fred Hoiberg said Dunn didn't lose any teeth, so early reports suggested Dunn was in pretty good shape, all things considered.

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"He took a chunk out of the floor, which is crazy," LaVine said. "He must have strong teeth or something."

LaVine's third game since coming back from knee surgery was a clunker. He hit just 2 of 12 shots and scored 5 points in his 20 minutes. The two-time slam dunk contest champ said he wanted to do something special when he got a breakaway dunk in the second quarter, but was getting tired so he stuck with a routine one-hander.

Nikola Mirotic led the Bulls with 24 points. He was the instigator of that second-quarter surge, when the Bulls recovered from an early 12-point deficit to take a 57-46 lead. But the tide turned quickly as Thompson and Curry led Golden State's third-quarter flurry, turning a tie game into a 19-point advantage.

"We lost our minds out there," Hoiberg said. "We weren't hitting shots and then we couldn't get back and matched up. The big part of the scouting report with this team is they're going to make the pass and keep moving. We relaxed, we stood up, we got caught on screens and a lot of that had to do with the fact that we weren't making shots on the other end.

"We've got to keep battling through that. We lost our spirit after a really hard-fought, energetic first half. We dug a 10-point hole, but we were unbelievable after that, flying that thing up the floor and played with an unbelievable amount of energy. We came out flat in the third and this team will make you pay."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

This game featured all sorts of craziness, beginning on the very first possession when Robin Lopez found a wide-open path to the rim. Warriors rookie Jordan Bell made a late attempt to stop Lopez, landed awkwardly and left the game with a sprained left ankle.

In the first half, Lauri Markkanen blocked a shot off Curry's forehead, the Bulls scored 5 points in the final 9.2 seconds of the first quarter and LaVine got the first dunk of his Bulls career. Mirotic had a nice sequence when he stopped Kevin Durant at the rim, jumper over a fallen Durant on his way upcourt, then buried a 3-pointer.

Markkanen finished with 11 points and tied an NBA record for most consecutive games with multiple 3-pointers by a rookie. Markkanen has done it 12 games in a row, matching a streak set by Mike Miller in 2001.

Golden State was without Draymond Green and Andre Iguodala due to injuries.

Twitter: @McGrawDHBulls

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