CHICAGO (AP) -- Dennis Johnson is no longer winless as an NBA coach.
The Los Angeles Clippers ended an eight-game skid -- their
longest losing streak of the season -- and gave Johnson his first
victory as their head coach with a 103-97 victory over the Chicago
Bulls on Saturday night.
"I actually thought I had it the other day when I took over a game from Alvin (Gentry),'' Johnson said. "But that one went to him. This is the first one.''
Bulls head coach Bill Cartwright has been upset with Chicago's defense all season, and after the game he let his frustrations show.
"It had nothing to do with our offense. Our offense is fine,'' Cartwright said. "It has been fine all year. Turn around and guard somebody. Turn around and put your body on somebody. Play some defense. Dive on a loose ball. Take a charge. Block a shot. We are averaging 93 points a game. It is plenty.''
Chicago could only get within four points in the second half, once when Jay Williams hit a 3-pointer with 52 seconds left, making it 97-93, and again when Donyell Marshall had layup with 16.4 seconds left.
Rookie Chris Wilcox added 12 points and six rebounds for Los Angeles.
The Clippers pulled away in the second quarter by going on a
14-2 run. Richardson hit a 3 to cut Chicago's lead to 40-39, and
Wilcox ended the run with a basket that gave the Clippers a 51-42
lead with 3:23 left in the second quarter.
Los Angeles led 59-47 at the half. Richardson came off the bench
and scored 14 first-half points -- all in the second quarter.
Maggette and Melvin Ely of the Clippers are from the Chicago suburbs and Richardson is from Chicago ... Despite both teams struggling, the game drew a capacity crowd of 22,303. ... The
Clippers won on the road for the first time since Feb. 11. ... The Clippers are 1-3 with Johnson as their head coach.