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Bulls stop surging Suns
Phoenix, AZ (SportsNetwork.com) - Carlos Boozer and Joakim Noah each recorded double-doubles and D.J. Augustin poured in 18 points off the bench as the Chicago Bulls cooled off the Phoenix Suns, 101-92, on Tuesday.
Boozer finished with 19 points and 12 rebounds while Noah had a 14-point, 14- rebound night for the Bulls, who ended Phoenix's five-game winning streak one day after suffering a humbling 29-point loss in Sacramento.
"I think as a team I think we played with a great edge throughout," Noah said. "We got punched in the mouth in Sacramento and we just wanted to come out and compete for 48 minutes as a team."
Goran Dragic scored half of his 24 points in the fourth quarter for Phoenix, which never recovered from a slow start.
The Suns came into the game having trailed for only one minute and 59 seconds over the previous four games. They never led Tuesday partly because they made just six field goals in both the first and second quarters while shooting an uncharacteristically low 30.0 percent (12-of-40) from the field.
"We could never get it going," Suns head coach Jeff Hornacek said. "We could never get over the hump."
Chicago, which made a putrid 28.2 percent of its shots on Monday, was in rare efficient form in the early going. The Bulls led by as many as a dozen in the first half and took a 44-33 cushion in the break.
The margin was cut to four several times in the third, but Chicago stayed ahead and led by six, 69-63, entering the fourth.
A Channing Frye 3-pointer had Phoenix within 72-68 early in the fourth, but Augustin bookended a 10-2 run with a 3-pointers to rebuild the double-digit advantage.
Leandro Barbosa had a chance to make it a one-possession game with under four minutes to play but missed a free throw after getting fouled on a runner while falling out of bounds.
Jimmy Butler, who also scored 18 points, and Noah scored on consecutive possessions following the missed freebie to put Chicago in front 93-85, and the Bulls held on over the final three minutes.
The Suns were trying for their longest winning streak since winning 10 in a row from March 14-April 2, 2010 ... Chicago improved to 2-2 on its six-game road trip ... The Bulls have won five straight as the visitor in this series ... Frye netted 18 points but shot just 2-of-11 from behind the arc ... Chicago is 8-2 when scoring 100-plus points.
02/05 00:53:09 ET