(SportsNetwork.com) - The Utah Jazz, the last winless team so far this season,
may have a tough time getting that elusive first victory as they visit the
Chicago Bulls Friday night.
The Bulls haven't fared much better than Utah, despite infinitely higher
expectations. Chicago was considered by some a championship favorite, what
with the return of Derrick Rose from ACL surgery.
Chicago fell to 1-3 in this early part of the season after a 97-80 drubbing
Wednesday night in Indiana to the Pacers, another team believed to be a threat
Wednesday's anticipated Central Division battle was close through three
quarters, with the Pacers one point ahead. It fell to pieces for the Bulls in
the fourth. They lost the final frame, 34-18, for the lopsided final tally.
"It's frustrating," acknowledged Rose. "But we're pro athletes. It's just four
games in. We can't let it get that frustrating. We know if we keep working
hard like we're doing, we're going to catch a rhythm soon."
Of course it's early, but the Bulls are 0-3 on the road so far this season.
Their lone victory came at home against the New York Knicks over a week ago
and needed a last-second shot by Rose to prevail.
Rose and Luol Deng led the way for Chicago on Wednesday with 17 points apiece.
Kirk Hinrich chipped in 12 off the bench, but starters Carlos Boozer and
Joakim Noah only managed 10 points between them.
The Jazz were expected to struggle this season as they decided to go with a
youth movement. Although, the franchise hasn't started 0-6 since an 0-11
beginning to its inaugural campaign in New Orleans. The Jazz moved to Salt
Lake City in 1979-80.
Loss No. 5 came Wednesday night when the Jazz fell to the previous winless
Boston Celtics, 97-87. Utah took a three-point lead after the first quarter,
but thumped in the second, 27-8.
"Eight points in the second quarter," Jazz coach Tyrone Corbin said. "That's
where we lost the game."
Gordon Hayward showed off for his former coach at Butler, current Celtics
skipper Brad Stevens. He had 28 points on 12-for-20 shooting, followed by 22
from Enes Kanter.
Richard Jefferson chipped in 13 and Derrick Favors had a double-double with 10
points and 14 rebounds.
The Jazz are 29th in the NBA in scoring and finish up a four-game eastern trip
Saturday when they visit the Toronto Raptors.
The Bulls have won five straight against Utah and the Jazz are 2-7 in their
last nine trips to the Windy City. The Jazz last won at the United Center
March 9, 2010.
The Sports Network