BOSTON — Jayson Tatum scored 21 points and Jaylen Brown chipped in 19 to lead the host Boston Celtics past the Chicago Bulls 113-101 on Monday night.
Boston earned its second straight victory following a three-game losing streak. Chicago sputtered to its seventh loss in eight games despite a game-high 30 points from Zach LaVine.
Enes Kanter (15 points), Kemba Walker (14), Marcus Smart (12) and Grant Williams (11) followed in double figures for the Celtics, who shot 47 percent compared to 45.7 percent for the Bulls. Kanter grabbed a game-high nine rebounds.
Boston led by as many as 18 and held its ground after the Bulls slashed the deficit to 75-69 on a LaVine trey with 1:42 to go in the third quarter. The Celtics scored eight of the next 10 points to close the quarter and begin to pull away.
Thaddeus Young scored 17 points for Chicago, while Tomas Satoransky (12) and Daniel Gafford (10) also produced double-figure totals.
A sluggish start ultimately caught up to Chicago, which scored just 14 points in the first quarter, its lowest-scoring opening quarter of the season. The Bulls had five field goals and four turnovers in the first 12 minutes while allowing Boston to convert a three-point play off a tip-in from a missed free throw.
Boston shot 52.5 percent (21-for-40) in the first half to take a 55-37 lead into the break. Kanter led the way with 15 points on 7-for-8 shooting while pulling down seven rebounds. LaVine had eight first-half points to pace Chicago, which shot 34.2 percent and was 1-for-13 from long range before intermission.
Strong ball movement boosted the Celtics throughout the first 24 minutes. The Celtics had 14 assists on 21 made field goals while committing just five turnovers.
Kanter started in place of Daniel Theis, who was sidelined due to right knee soreness. Williams sustained a sore left shoulder late in the second quarter but was available to return.
Chicago fell to 1-16 this season against foes with records of .500 or better, including 0-2 against the Celtics, who edged the Bulls by seven points at United Center on Jan. 4. — Reuters