Kirk Hinrich scored a game-high 25 points, three of his teammates recorded double-doubles, and the Chicago Bulls defense looked dominant in a 103-87 win over the Golden State Warriors Friday night.
The Bulls defense was the real story, though, holding the Warriors to 13 points in the first quarter and 16 points in the third. They scored less in those two quarters combined (29) than they did in the second (37).
Chicago came out of the gates firing on all cylinders. They opened with a quick 8-0 run and stretched the lead to 19 points before eventually ending the first quarter up 31-13.
Hinrich's 25 points were flanked by 22 from Nate Robinson, his most since Christmas Day against Houston. Joakim Noah (14 and 15), Carlos Boozer (15 and 13) and Jimmy Butler (16 and 12) all chipped in by recording double-doubles with points and rebounds.
Golden State was paced by 23 points and seven rebounds from recently voted All-Star David Lee. They shot just 34 percent from the field, though, getting inefficient shooting performances from Klay Thompson (4-of-13) among many others.
The win was Chicago's sixth in seven games, moving them ahead of Brooklyn for the Eastern Conference's third seed. The Nets lost 101-77 in Memphis Friday evening.
Even with the loss, Golden State retains the five seed out West, but their lead over fifth-seeded Denver shrunk to just one game.
Player of the Game: Kirk Hinrich (CHI)
Huge bounce-back game from Hinrich, who scored over 20 for the second time in three games. In between those two big games, however, was a scoreless, 0-of-5 dud against the Pistons.
Hinrich was remarkably efficient on Friday, hitting 8 of his 11 shots from the field, including an incredible 6-of-7 from three-point range. If he can continue to flash that range, Chicago will become a force to be reckoned with.
Honorable mentions to Nate Robinson, Carlos Boozer, Joakim Noah and Jimmy Butler.
What's Next for the Warriors?
What's Next for the Bulls?