NBA: Thunder rally from 22 down, stun Bulls in OT

Reuters

Posted at Jan 16 2021 02:24 PM

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander scored a career-high 33 points and Mike Muscala hit a pair of 3-pointers in overtime to lift the Oklahoma City Thunder to a 127-125 home win over the Chicago Bulls on Friday.

The Bulls led by as many as 22 points in the first half before the Thunder used a pair of big runs to tie it up in the final seconds. 

Muscala's 3-pointers and Chicago's overtime shooting woes turned the tide, helping Oklahoma City win for the first time in six home games this season.

In last season's lone meeting in Oklahoma City, the Bulls led by 26 points before the Thunder came back to win for the largest comeback in franchise history. Friday's comeback is tied for the fifth-largest.

While Muscala came through big in overtime, the Thunder depended on other players for long stretches earlier.

For much of the game, it was Luguentz Dort's defense and 3-point shooting keeping Oklahoma City afloat.

Then late, it was Gilgeous-Alexander scoring 12 fourth-quarter points to force overtime.

Dort hit four 3-pointers and scored 21 points, adding a career-high six steals.

The late comeback overshadowed a 35-point performance by Chicago's Zach LaVine, who hit eight 3-pointers.

Over the last four games, LaVine has been averaging 37.5 points per game. But the Bulls have lost all four.

Chicago hit a season-high 21 3-pointers.

Oklahoma City, though, forced 24 turnovers and converted them to 33 points on the other end. In the third quarter, the Thunder had 19 points off nine Bulls turnovers.

Chicago seemed to be cruising to a win after LaVine's 3-pointer put them up 16 with just less than five minutes remaining.

But the Bulls had five turnovers the rest of the way. Oklahoma City took advantage and Gilgeous-Alexander scored eight points during a 19-3 run to finish regulation.

After a second consecutive Bulls' offensive turnover gave the Thunder another chance in the final minute, Gilgeous-Alexander drove to the basket and finished with a short jumper, picking up a foul by Coby White and hitting a free throw to tie it with 16 seconds left.

The Bulls had one final chance to pull out the win in regulation but LaVine's 3-pointer missed the mark at the buzzer.