Noah scores 20 to lead Bulls past T-Wolves 110-96Jan 10, 2010 - 4:30 AM CHICAGO(AP) -- Joakim Noah is turning into more than a one dimensional role player.
Noah had 20 points and nine rebounds, and Kirk Hinrich had 20 points and seven assists to lead the Chicago Bulls past the Minnesota Timberwolves 110-96 on Saturday night.
Reserve John Salmons scored 14 points and rookie Taj Gibson had 13 points and nine rebounds to help the Bulls snap a three-game losing streak.
In his third season, Noah's offensive game continues to show progress. He made 9 of his 13 shot attempts.
"He plays hard every night," said Hinrich. "You expect him to rebound the ball, but he's been a huge part of this team in all aspects. He knows what it takes to win, he's very competitive and what he does for us is huge."
After a win against Indiana on Friday night, the Timberwolves lost for the sixth time in seven games. Minnesota has won consecutive games only once this season.
"As the game went on our guys were getting more and more tired and more and more frustrated," said Timberwolves coach Kurt Rambis.
Ryan Gomes led Minnesota with 15 points and Jonny Flynn had 14 points and eight rebounds.
"When you have a scoring drought you have to pick it up on the defensive end. We didn't do that tonight and it hurt us," said Flynn. "We're still trying to figure a lot of things out."
The Bulls, who took a 52-46 lead into halftime, opened the third quarter with a 10-2 run. Noah had an easy dunk off Hinrich's pass to start the half, and Gibson had back-to-back baskets to give the Bulls a 62-48 lead.
Salmons scored on a driving layup with 26.1 seconds left in the third quarter to extend Chicago's lead to 79-64. Gibson's basket pushed the lead to 90-70.
"We've been through a tough little stretch as a team and it's good to play well and to play with good energy tonight. If we can play with some level of consistency, that would really help us," said Noah.
The Bulls coasted despite a quiet night from Derrick Rose, who finished with eight points on 3-for-7 shooting. Rose came in averaging 24.4 points and 6.8 assists in his last 10 games. He scored four points in the first half on only two shot attempts.
NOTES: The Bulls beat the Timberwolves for just the second time in the last seven meetings. ... Rambis was assessed a technical in the fourth quarter for arguing with officials. ... Chicago won for the first time on the second game of back-to-back. ... The Bulls' 110 points was a season high.
FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
--- --- --- --- -----
MINNESOTA 32 14 18 32 96
CHICAGO 28 24 27 31 110 FINAL
HIGH SCORERS: MIN - RYAN GOMES 15, JONNY FLYNN 14, TWO
PLAYERS WITH 12
CHI - KIRK HINRICH 20, JOAKIM NOAH 20, JOHN
Jan 9 10:23 PM
CHICAGO 79 END, 3RD QTR
Jan 9 9:48 PM
CHICAGO 52 HALFTIME
Jan 9 9:07 PM
CHICAGO 28 END, 1ST QTR
Jan 9 8:35 PM
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