PHOENIX (AP) — Robin Lopez scored 24 points to help the Chicago Bulls beat the Phoenix Suns 116-101 on Monday night, snapping a five-game losing streak.
Zach LaVine had 17 points, eight rebounds and seven assists, and Lauri Markkanen added 17 points and nine boards for Chicago. Lopez shot 11-for-14 from the field as the Bulls were 52 percent (46-for-89).
Deandre Ayton had 25 points and 12 rebounds, and Devin Booker also scored 25 for Phoenix, which has lost 3-of-4 after a 5-2 stretch.
The Suns played without one of their top scorers and main contributors to their recent run of improved basketball, as Kelly Oubre Jr. missed the game with a left thumb sprain. Guard Tyler Johnson did not play due to a sore knee, missing his third straight game, and forward T.J. Warren hasn’t played since Jan. 22 due to an ankle injury. Backup center Richaun Holmes also sat out with a quadriceps strain, his second straight game missed.
Lopez hit four different types of hook shots in the first quarter, helping the Bulls take a 34-20 lead into the second. Lopez scored 14 of his points with hook shots.
The Suns missed their first six three-pointers, and after Cristiano Felicio’s dunk and free throw, the Bulls took their largest lead of the game, 39-20, with 10:22 to play in the second quarter.
The Suns responded with an 11-2 run capped off by Troy Daniels’ triple with 7:03 to go, making it 41-31.
LaVine’s layup and free throw put the Bulls up by 19 again, 54-35, with 4:12 left in the half.
The Suns cut it to 56-43 at halftime, with Booker making just 3-of-11 shots, including four misses from three-point range.
Phoenix pulled to 56-48 early in the third, but Lopez scored the Bulls’ next three baskets for a 66-52 lead with 6:57 to go. Chicago went ahead by 18 in the third and led 86-73 going into the fourth.
The Suns got the Bulls’ lead down to nine early in the fourth, but couldn’t get any closer. Antonio Blakeney dunked with 9:25 to play to give the Bulls a 91-77 lead.
Chicago improved to 5-7 in the second of back-to-back games.
Bulls: Shaquille Harrison started at guard against his former team, and his first basket of the game was a driving dunk. … F Otto Porter Jr. did not play due to a sore shoulder, and head coach Jim Boylen said there is no timetable for when he is able to play next. … Chicago Cubs 3B Kris Bryant sat courtside for the game.
Suns: Ayton skied for a two-handed alley-oop dunk from Josh Jackson with 2:19 left in the third quarter. … Rookie Mikal Bridges made his first start since Feb. 13 and scored 12 points. … Ayton recorded his 36th double-double of the season and is one away from tying Alvan Adams for the franchise’s single-season record.