(SportsNetwork.com) - The Chicago Bulls co-own the longest current winning
streak in the NBA at five games and will put that mark to the test Monday
night when they welcome the Washington Wizards to the United Center.
Both the Bulls and Denver Nuggets have won five straight, but the last three
of Chicago's five consecutive victories came without two-time All-Star Luol
Deng. He was traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers, so the Bulls are in the midst
of some quality team basketball.
A win on Monday night gets the Bulls to .500, which is pretty incredible
considering not only did they acquire no meaningful assets right now for Deng,
but former MVP Derrick Rose was lost for the season in November.
"Every time we get knocked down, we get back up. Things don't always go your
way," said Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau. "If you are not satisfied with your
circumstances, you have to do everything you can to change them. We are
fighting, clawing, doing everything we have to do."
The Bulls have won eight of their last 10 and the fifth straight victory came
Saturday with a 103-97 home triumph over the Charlotte Bobcats.
Joakim Noah, D.J. Augustin and Carlos Boozer each turned in double-doubles on
Saturday. Noah finished with 19 points and 14 rebounds, Augustin added 20
points and 12 assists and Boozer chipped in 12 points and 10 boards for the
The Wizards have dropped two straight and both came in semi-interesting
On Friday, the Wiz only scored 66 points in a 27-point rout at Indianapolis.
Then, on Saturday, the Wizards and Houston Rockets endured two rain delays
before the Rockets emerged with a 114-107 victory in Washington D.C.
The game was delayed at the start of the second and third quarters due to a
leak in the Verizon Center roof that continuously dripped water onto the floor
at halfcourt near the scorer's table.
John Wall and Trevor Ariza registered double-doubles in Washington's fourth
straight loss at home, as each scored 23 points. Wall added 10 assists and
Ariza grabbed 14 rebounds
Kevin Seraphin added 18 points off the bench for the Wizards, while Bradley
Beal scored 13 points in the loss.
The game was tied at 29 after one quarter of play when there was a lengthy
delay at the start of the second stanza. Because of the leak, the game was
delayed 35 minutes as personnel tried to deal with the situation.
"It was a big distraction. It can make you too complacent. It is up to us to
stay focused, stay in game mode and try to win the game," Beal said.
The Wizards and Bulls split last season's four matchups with the home team
prevailing each time. The Wizards have lost eight of their last nine in
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