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Saturday, February 4, 2023

Chicago Bulls star Zach LaVine scores 39 points in first half loss to Atlanta Hawks

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Chicago was attempting to acquire four straight for the first time since December 2017.

LaVine scored 25 directly at the next quarter in placing the NBA high for points in the first half of this year. The 39 points was the third most in the first half of a match in the past 25 seasons, trailing just the 42 and 40 which Kobe Bryant and Klay Thompson scored, respectively, in both 2003 and 2016.

“I only got in a rhythm,” LaVine explained. “My 3s began falling after which I can get into the midrange and reach the hoop. I had been attempting to get into the free throw line in the next quarter since I was so damn exhausted. Attempting to find just a bit of a rest.”

The Hawks did not go smoothly, taking an 86-84 lead entering the fourth.

It seemed that the Bulls were in great shape when LaVine hit a layup to put Chicago up 88-86 with 11 minutes, 7 minutes remaining. Young fed Clint Capela for an alley-oop dip two possessions later to create it 104-101 in favour of the Hawks.

LaVine came from a timeout to perpetrate a travel turnover, and the Hawks took a comfy 10-point guide on Capela’s dip with 2:42 remaining.

Gallinari followed with a 3 from the left wing to put Atlanta up 116-106 at the last moment to expand a 19-4 run and finish any residual suspense.

LaVine, an All-Star guard, outscored the Hawks 10-4 from the 9:46 mark of this first and subsequently made it 14-10 with a fast-break alley-oop layup. LaVine was 13-for-18 in the area and 7-for-9 on 3s in the first half.

LaVine, the initial Bulls player to score 30 in the first half because Michael Jordan piled up as numerous on Feb. 24, 1997, against Portland, had yet another crowning accomplishment this year. He started the match as one of three players to average 25.0 points while shooting 50 percent from the field, 40 percent on 3s and 85 percent on free throws.

However, the Hawks made certain LaVine did not continue that tear at the second half.

“We needed to alter the game plan a little bit, naturally,” Gallinari explained. “LaVine had an wonderful first half. We were far more competitive on him trying to catch the ball from his hands”

LaVine’s previous season high was 46 on Feb. 10 from New Orleans.

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