Jennings bests Robinson in battle of scorers


Jennings bests Robinson in battle of scorers

In a matchup of undersized, shoot-first point guards, Milwaukees Brandon Jennings proved to Nate Robinson that having to shoulder an entire teams offensive burden on a nightly basis is a little bit different than igniting a squad for a quarter at a time.

Jennings went off for 35 points, including five three-pointers, Wednesday night in the Bucks 106-94 win over the Bulls at the United Center, 20 of which he scored in the third quarter. Robinson countered with 19, a respectable total, but 13 of those points were in the opening period, during which everything was seemingly going the Bulls way and Jennings was scoreless.

After a second quarter that saw the Bulls maintain a comfortable winning margin over the visitors, everything changed. Following the intermission, Jennings looked like a man possessed, hitting four triples in the period and even staring down the Bulls bench, doing his imitation of Robinsons post-basket airplane celebration to add further insult.

A little trash talking before the second half. I guess he felt like he had it going, he was getting the best of me, so I dont really take trash talking too kindly because I dont do a lot of trash talking. But I warned him, so hey, it happens, the fourth-year pro explained afterwards. I got ticked off at halftime and right from the jump, I just started attacking and thats just something I have to do more often, just keep attacking and having a short memory.

Bucks interim head coach Jim Boylan added: "I think the whole team played well, but obviously Brandon offensively really got it going.

I dont know what set him off. Two guys that like to talk a lot, you put them in a room together, somethings going to happen, he continued. Nate had it going for a while in the first half. Brandon, sometimes that gets his motor going a little bit. He went back at him and theyll face each other again, do it again some other time.

While Jennings didnt singlehandedly beat the Bulls Milwaukees 15 blocked shots had a lot to do with the loss its rare that a Tom Thibodeau-coached team allows one player to put on a virtuoso performance of that magnitude. Still, the Bulls head coach refused to specifically blame Robinson.

You let a guy get into rhythm and youre playing off his body, youre not stopping anyone like that, Thibodeau said. Its a competitive game. Some guys do it and theyre fine. To me, if you do it and thats the way you are and youre not distracted Id prefer to just concentrate on doing your job. There were a lot of things that we could have done better. You win together and you lose together, so we have to make the necessary corrections and get ready for New York.

For his part, the emotional Robinson accepted some responsibility for his role in the defeat, as the Bulls again surrendered a double-digit lead this time, it was 15 points and in the first half, as opposed to 27 points late in the game, which is what happened in November to Milwaukee at the United Center.

Tonight, we beat ourselves. Brandon Jennings had a hot period. It happens, he acknowledged in a solemn Bulls locker room. Its just part of the game. Nobody wants to get scored on, but its a team game. You cant get caught up in playing one-on-one, so for us, weve just got to continue to play hard.

It happens all the time, Robinson continued, when asked about Jennings mocking him, before addressing the trash talk that clearly occurred on the floor. A couple little dirty plays exchanged, but nothing to complain about. Its basketball.

Doug McDermott, Kyle Korver return to Creighton for NBA preseason game

Doug McDermott, Kyle Korver return to Creighton for NBA preseason game

Competing in Nebraska may have been foreign for most Chicago Bulls and Atlanta Hawks players, but Doug McDermott and Kyle Korver were right at home. 

The veterans, who both starred at Creighton University in Omaha, Neb., returned to their college stomping grounds for NBA preseason action Thursday night. Korver's Hawks got the best of McDermott's Bulls, 97-81, on Creighton's home floor.

Both had illustrious careers for the Blue Jays basketball squad. McDermott, who graduated in 2014, won the Wooden Award his senior season and is the all-time leading scorer. Korver, as you may have guessed, holds the school record for most three-pointers made. Fans at Thursday's game got a flashback from these glory days, as both logged significant minutes and put up offensive numbers. 

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McDermott didn't have his best shooting night, but knocked down two triples and finished with 16 points. Korver also scored 16, splashing in four from beyond the arc. 

Afterwards, McDermott thanked the Omaha faithful via Twitter.

With the loss, the Bulls' preseason ends with a record of 3-4. They open regular season play on Oct. 27 against the Boston Celtics. 


Bulls drop preseason finale to Dwight Howard, Hawks

Bulls drop preseason finale to Dwight Howard, Hawks

OMAHA, Neb. — Dwight Howard had 16 points and 15 rebounds in a 97-81 win over the Bulls.

Kyle Korver, who played at Creighton, also scored 16 points as Atlanta finished the preseason 5-2.

Jimmy Butler scored 16 points as Chicago wrapped up exhibition play at 3-4.

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HAWKS: Kent Bazemore had 15 points and nine rebounds. ... Korver made four 3-pointers.

BULLS: Doug McDermott, another former Creighton star playing in his college arena, scored 16 points but shot 5 for 15. ... Dwyane Wade (3 for 14) and Rajon Rondo (1 for 7) combined for just 11 points. Both had six assists.

UP NEXT: Atlanta (5-2) hosts Washington next Thursday in its season opener. Chicago (3-4) also opens Thursday against Boston.