Regular Season Series (Game 2 of 4)

Series starts 12/10

Game 1: Saturday, December 10th
Game 2: Friday, January 27th
Game 3: Sunday, March 19th
Game 4: Friday, April 14th

Wizards 79

(19-22, 8-13 away)

Bulls 90

(19-23, 9-13 home)

    Coverage: CSNC

    7:30 PM ET, January 27, 2006

    United Center, Chicago, IL

    1 2 3 4 T
    WSH 16 26 15 2279
    CHI 28 19 20 2390

    Top Performers

    WSH: A. Jamison 21 Pts, 10 Reb, 2 Ast, 2 Stl

    Chi: T. Chandler 12 Pts, 20 Reb, 2 Ast, 1 Stl, 2 Blk

    Gordon, Chandler lead Bulls to win over Wizards

    CHICAGO (AP) -- When things were going bad for Tyson Chandler, he put everything on his shoulders: his big contract, his string of bad performances and his resulting lack of minutes.

    Now that he's seemingly out of his first-half funk, Chandler is starting to carry his weight for the Chicago Bulls.

    Chandler grabbed a season-high 20 rebounds to lead the Bulls to a 90-79 victory over the Washington Wizards on Friday night. Ben Gordon led all scorers with 26 points.

    "I'm happy for Tyson," Bulls coach Scott Skiles said. "I'm sure a good amount of grief he's gone through has been self-imposed. He's kind of tortured himself for some of the games he hasn't played well in. He's really broke out the last three games and he was obviously excellent again tonight."

    Chandler added 12 points and two blocks. He went 8-for-11 from the free-throw line, a vast improvement from his 39 percent average coming in. He hit four in a row to end the game and finished with his fifth double-double of the season.

    The 7-foot-1 center has averaged 12.7 points and 14 rebounds over his last three games. He signed a six-year, $63 million deal before the season and hadn't played up to that level much since. He came into the game averaging 4.8 points and 7.4 rebounds.

    "I was thinking about it too much," Chandler said. "It's never that you don't want to go out there and play well and play hard but when you start thinking, everything creeps in. You think about the last shot you missed, you think about the rebound you missed, and you don't get anything accomplished. Now it's like if you missed, forget about it and make it up the next time."

    The Bulls never trailed and fought off a fourth-quarter rally from Washington to win for the fourth time in five games. Chicago made 10 of 11 free throws in the fourth and Gordon scored nine points in the quarter to help close it out.

    The Bulls went scoreless for about six minutes as Washington went on a 10-0 run to pull within 69-67 on a Gilbert Arenas 3-pointer with 6:19 to play. The Bulls got some breathing room with an 11-4 surge but the Wizards came right back and Antawn Jamison's 3 cut the lead back to four.

    But Gordon responded with a 3 and the Wizards never challenged again, missing their next five shots.

    Chicago shot just 12-for-42 (28.6 percent) in the second half, and 38 percent for the game, but its defense stayed strong, forcing 13 turnovers and grabbing 26 rebounds. They made 26-of-34 from the line.

    "To win a game where we only make 12 field goals in the second half, obviously our defense is good," Skiles said. "I thought we were very active and it won the game for us."

    Caron Butler scored 12 points with a career-high 16 rebounds for Washington. He had 12 boards in the first half, nine on the offensive glass. Arenas led the Wizards with 23 points. Jamison added 21 points and 10 rebounds and Brendan Haywood scored 12 with 13 rebounds.

    Washington (19-22) was held to a season-low in points, shot 36 percent and only went to the line 20 times, almost 11 less than its average.

    "I think we got some great looks, but we weren't making some of the looks," Butler said. "You've got to give them credit for their defense. They did a great job of protecting the paint."

    Washington coach Eddie Jordan was terse after the game but said the team had a bad practice on Thursday, too loose for his taste.

    "Our last practice, our last shoot-around, just weren't serious enough," Jordan said. "I allowed things to happen out on the floor that I should have stopped. I'll make sure it won't happen again."

    The Wizards have lost to the Bulls both times they've played this season after knocking Chicago out of the playoffs last season. Washington is now a half-game ahead of the Bulls for the eighth playoff spot in the East.

    "You start getting past the mid-point or getting to the 30-game point and you have a chance to pick up a full game on a team, you'd like to take advantage of that," Skiles said.

    Chicago used a 14-2 run to establish an early lead in the first. Kirk Hinrich layup off a nifty give-and-go play with Chandler made it 18-6 with 4:58 to play.

    The Wizards moved closer in the second quarter. A Jamison 3-pointer capped off an 11-4 run and cut the lead to 40-38. Gordon then scored five of his 15 first-half points down the stretch as the Bulls led 47-42 at the break.

    Game notes

    Wizards forward Etan Thomas played for the first time in four games after a death in the family. He scored three points after entering the game in the fourth quarter. ... The Bulls signed forward James Thomas to a 10-day contract earlier Friday. He made his Bulls debut with 2:07 left in the second quarter and quickly committed two fouls. ... Wizards forward Awvee Storey was late scratch with a sprained left ankle.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 79 90
    FGM-FGA 31-86 (.360) 30-79 (.380)
    3PM-3PA 4-19 (.211) 4-16 (.250)
    FTM-FTA 13-20 (.650) 26-34 (.765)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 22-53 17-47
    Assists 13 19
    Turnovers 17 13
    Steals 7 6
    Blocks 5 3
    Fast Break Points 11 8
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 26 (1/0) 18 (1/0)
    Largest Lead 0 13

    Top Performers

    Antawn Jamison Jamison
    Points: 21
    Reb: 10
    Ast: 2
    Stl: 2
    Blk: 0
    Tyson Chandler Chandler
    Points: 12
    Reb: 20
    Ast: 2
    Stl: 1
    Blk: 2