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Rookie Adama Sanogo has 22 points and 20 rebounds to shatter career highs, Bulls top Wizards 129-127

WASHINGTON (AP) — Rookie Adama Sanogo had 22 points and 20 rebounds to shatter his career highs and help the short-handed Chicago Bulls beat the Washington Wizards 129-127 on Friday night.

Chicago coach Billy Donovan gave starters DeMar DeRozan, Nikola Vucevic and Alex Caruso the night off after clinching the ninth seed in the Eastern Conference on Thursday night with a victory in Detroit.

“It allows them to rest a little bit,” Donovan said. “And then we’ll probably talk after the game tomorrow about going to the New York game.”

Those absences and others allowed Sanogo, who has spent most of his time this season playing in the G League, to play 35 minutes.

“It feels good, man,” Sanogo said. “I’ve been waiting for this all year. So to be able to come in and do it now, it feels great. … The thing about this, it’s like a dream come true for me.”

Javonte Green added 24 points, Jevon Carter had 20 points and 12 assists and Torrey Craig finished with 11 points and 15 rebounds. The Bulls won two straight for the first time in nearly a month.

Corey Kispert scored 12 of his 23 points in the fourth quarter for Washington in its home finale. Deni Avdija had 23 points and 12 rebounds. The Wizards have lost five straight.

Patrick Baldwin Jr. added 19 points and 12 rebounds, rookie Tristan Vukcivic scored a career-best 19 points, and Jared Butler had 15 points and 10 assists as part of a youthful lineup for the Wizards, who were also without several regulars.

“We’ve played a lot of close games, fourth-quarter games, but (it’s) taking advantage of their opportunity,” interim coach Brian Keefe said about his young players. “I think that’s the thing that I’ve been really pleased about with them, is that when their opportunity has (come) throughout the year, they’ve seized the moment.”

Up six late, the Bulls made only four of their final eight free throws to allow the Wizards one last failed comeback bid.

Kispert’s 3 from the wing cut it to 127-126. On the next possession, Baldwin missed his second free throw with a chance to tie it at 128. Sanogo sank one of two free throws before Kispert missed a running, contested leaner at the buzzer.

“I don’t think I got here by chance,” said Sanogo, the former UConn star. “I got here because these guys believe in me. These guys think I can have a chance. I’ve got to show that, too.”

UP NEXT

Bulls: Close the season at New York on Sunday.

Wizards: Finish at Boston on Sunday.

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