The Orlando Magic fell to 12-29 at Amway Center on Monday night as the Chicago Bulls dealt them a 102-84 defeat on Fan Appreciation Night. Carlos Boozer led five Bulls in double-figures with 22 points, while forwards Luol Deng and Jimmy Butler did a bit of everything, combining for 26 points, 14 rebounds, 13 assists, two steals, and two blocks.
Tobias Harris scored 20 for Orlando, while Nikola Vučević had 17 points and 14 rebounds for his 45th double-double of the season.
Orlando led after the first period, but Chicago took command in the second, doubling up the Magic, 28-14. The Bulls went 10-of-15 from the floor, including 3-of-3 from three-point distance, as they built their halftime edge to 49-37. Back-to-back triples by Kirk Hinrich helped key that run, as they turned a two-point Chicogo advantage to an eight-point one with 2:39 to play in the half.
Orlando had only Vučević to rely on offensively in the half--he had 14 points, while no other Orlando player had more than six--but even the second-year center struggled in the telltale second quarter, missing four of his five shot attempts. However, his activity on the glass earned him four free-throw tries, and he sank all of them. Vučević is a seven-footer with a real knack for offensive rebounding, but he doesn't often earn trips to the foul line, so his progress in this area is notable.
The Bulls did not relent after halftime, opening the third quarter on a 10-2 run to boost their lead to 20. Orlando missed two of its first three shots and committed three turnovers in that span.
Marco Belinelli scored 14 points on 5-of-8 shooting in the third period as Chicago extended to a 22-point lead. The Bulls limited Vučević to three points by walling off the paint and trying to take away passing lanes to him. As a result of the Bulls taking away the middle, Harris and Maurice Harkless were given more offensive responsibility.
Rookie guard Doron Lamb also saw greater touches, working at point guard, instead of his usual two-guard position, for much of the night. He finished with nine points, one assist, and one turnover in 30 minutes.