Anthony scores 21 to lead Thunder’s 101-69 rout of Bulls
CHICAGO (AP) — Carmelo Anthony scored 21 points and Paul George had 20 to lead the Oklahoma City Thunder to a 101-69 victory over the Chicago Bulls on Saturday night.
Russell Westbrook added 12 points, 13 rebounds and 13 assists for his third triple-double of the season. He has now recorded a triple-double against every league opponent in his career. Steven Adams and Raymond Felton had 12 points apiece for the Thunder, who won their first road game in three attempts after losing three of their last four games overall.
Lauri Markkanen scored 15 points to lead the rebuilding Bulls, who were coming off their first win in four games this season after beating the Atlanta Hawks 91-86 on Thursday. Justin Holiday added 11 points and Robin Lopez had 10 for Chicago, which shot 28.6 percent from the field.
The Thunder shot 44.3 percent from the field in completing a back-to-back after losing to the Minnesota Timberwolves 119-116 on Friday night.
The Thunder led 50-31 at halftime behind George’s 14 points.
The Bulls made 6 of 11 3-point attempts to trail 26-23 after the first quarter before missing all eight of their 3-point attempts in the second quarter. The Thunder went on an 18-2 run to start the quarter, capped by George’s transition layup for a 44-25 lead. Oklahoma City outscored the Bulls 24-8 in the period.
The Bulls went 10 for 37 beyond the arc after making a franchise-high 42 3s in their first four games.
Markkanen shot 3 for 7 from the field and had three 3s after he became the first Bulls rookie to score in double figures in each of the first four games of his career since Derrick Rose in 2008.
Thunder: Oklahoma City was leading the league with 10.6 steals per game. .The Thunder had dropped four of their six previous games against Chicago.
Bulls: PG Kris Dunn (left index finger dislocation) made his Bulls debut off the bench. He was injured during an Oct. 6 preseason game. He was not on a minutes limit, coach Fred Hoiberg said. Dunn had eight points and five fouls. . F Paul Zipser (knee contusion) returned after missing one game. . G Cameron Payne (right foot surgery) is expected to meet with doctors Friday. Hoiberg said he hopes Payne returns around Jan. 1.
UP IN THE AIR
Some Thunder players posted photos on social media showing the dented nose of the charter flight they took to Chicago on early Saturday. According to Delta Air Lines, the flight from Minneapolis apparently encountered a bird when it landed.
“You never take anything for granted, just be thankful and blessed they we were able to land the plane and everything was OK,” Westbrook said. “Seeing stuff like that just shows you how you need to cherish life and understand the important things in life and embrace every moment.”
Coach Billy Donovan said the plane encountered turbulence about halfway through the flight.
“The plane dropped a little bit,” Donovan said. “Then they just basically told us they were trying to get to a lower altitude because they maybe were concerned about the cabin pressure.”
Delta Air Lines spokeswoman Elizabeth Wolf said maintenance was evaluating the situation and the Boeing 757-200 landed safely at Chicago’s Midway International Airport.
Thunder: At Milwaukee on Tuesday.
Bulls: At Miami on Wednesday.