SAN ANTONIO (AP)—The Chicago Bulls are glad to be done with Texas.
Chicago opened its swing with a loss at Dallas, then fell at Houston on Thursday.
“They’re on that run where they play all three Texas teams and they were in a back-to-back situation,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. “They just ran out of juice. It was fortunate for us.”
The Spurs (7-2) have won six of their last seven, while the Bulls (3-6) have dropped four of five.
It could have been worse for the Bulls. After leading the team with 21 points in 25 minutes, Ben Gordon came out of the game with 3:13 to go after slipping and injuring his left wrist when he tried to break his fall while driving to the basket against the Spurs’ Bruce Bowen.
“They think it’s a sprain,” Gordon said after viewing X-rays with physicians. He also said he does not expect to miss any time with the injury.
The Bulls are off until Sunday, when they play the Lakers in Los Angeles.
Gordon’s slip was just a hint of how sloppy the game was. The teams combined for 47 turnovers.
San Antonio actually turned the ball over more, 24-23. But the Spurs shot 51 percent from the floor and hit six more 3-point shots.
“Our defense was very suspect tonight,” Bulls coach Scott Skiles said. “We let Parker and Udrih penetrate at will.”
The Bulls shot 46 percent from the floor, but were 12-of-21 from the free throw line.
Duncan benefited most from Parker and Udrih. He was 10-of-15 from the floor.
“Still, we had a lot of turnovers,” Duncan said. “But, all in all, defensively we were solid and we put a pretty good game together.”
The Spurs had their largest lead of 19 points with 6:41 left to play.
The Bulls erased a six-point Spurs lead with less than a minute remaining in the first quarter with three straight baskets by Gordon, including a 3-pointer, in 41 seconds. His 11-footer less than a minute into the second quarter gave Chicago a 29-28 lead.
But that’s when the Bulls started turning the ball over with regularity, committing 12 turnovers in the second quarter.
After edging into the lead by one point, Chicago gave the ball up four times during the next three minutes and fell behind 39-31.
The Bulls had a chance to cut the lead to three points with less than three minutes before halftime. But they committed four turnovers before the break and fell behind again by eight points.
The game began with a flurry of missed shots from Argentine players— the Bulls’ Andres Nocioni started 0-for-3, the Spurs’ Manu Ginobili was 0-for-2 and Fabricio Oberto 0-for-1 before any other player missed. … Nocioni went 0-for-9 until hitting a jumper with 5:47 left in the game. … Parker, who was assessed a technical foul Wednesday against Charlotte for arguing a call, got a brief scolding from Popovich when he began arguing a call in the first quarter with referee Bill Kennedy.