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February 4, 2008 6:19 PM

Chicago game thread

Posted by Jayda Evans

A LITTLE SHORT: The 118-108 loss is disappointing, but think if you're one of the 935 people that reportedly did not get a bobblehead. The Sonics' reported attendance was 10,935 and they only distributed 10,000 Collison dolls tonight. Bummer.

COLLISON OUT: Collison received a nice applause after fouling out on his bobblehead night. He finished with four points and nine boards in 27 minutes.

HINRICH OUT: Hinrich left the game due to bruised ribs and will not return. The Bulls win looks secure anyway. They're up 105-95 with 2:57 remaining.

THOMAS OUT:Kurt Thomas will not return due to a scratched right eye. He had two points and three rebounds in 17 minutes. This is probably why Swift is able to get extended minutes. But Swifty is also playing really hard, scoring four points in five minutes. Sonics are down 99-88.

SCORE ONE: Swift just drained a 14-foot jumper, but he's heaving on the court. Supes down 91-79 and it looks like the streak is going to end at three consecutive wins.

SWIFTY RETURNS: Swift just checked in with 11:38 remaining in the game. Carlesimo said he'd try to find minutes in between timeouts or something like that. It's interesting to play Swift now, though. The Supes are down 83-76 and trying to get a win. Swift already looks a little slow.

MR. SMITH: Each time the Supes drew close to the lead, Joe Smith was there to pour in some offense to keep Seattle down. The Sonics trailed 56-49 at the half and Smith led Chicago with 14 points. Szczerbiak had 14 from the bench and Durant is shooting better, going 5-for-9 from the field in the opening half for 11 points.

WALLY'S WORLD: Back-to-back three-pointers by Szczerbiak brought some life into the building. The Supes have yet to take control of the game as they seek their first four-game win streak since 2006, though. They trail 44-42 with 2:42 remaining before the half.

END OF FIRST QUARTER: C Johan Petro had a nice block on a Ben Gordon runner and Collison grabbed three big rebounds to give the Supes' defense a lift and close the deficit to 27-25 at the end of the first quarter. Still, the Bulls are shooting 52.2 percent and the Sonics have missed 15 of their 24 attempts.

SUPER HANGOVER: Don't know if folks are partied out from the Super Bowl or the NBA scheduling seven home games in 13 days for the Supes, ending the stand on a Monday night, is hurting attendance but of the 10,000 Collison bobblehead dolls, I'm guessing 3,000 are still available (OK, maybe not that many, but there are a lot of empty seats). Collison just checked in and the golden bobblehead was delivered. The fans are draped in Supes jerseys and sitting courtside adjacent to the Sonics bench. Seattle trails 17-14 to Chicago with 4:49 remaining in the opening quarter.

SWIFT TO PLAY?: C Robert Swift has been cleared to play, but Carlesimo wanted to wait until the player participated in a couple of practices before throwing him in a game. Only that might not happen. The Bulls a game out of the playoffs and a quality team despite their 18-28 record, yet if there's a situation where Carlesimo can play Swifty (read junk minutes), he's going to do it tonight. Carlesimo doesn't expect Swifty's timing to be down or his conditioning to be any good, but since Swifty is antsy to play, the coach might oblige. Carlesimo is hopeful the team has enough bodies to practice five-on-five Tuesday in order to truly return Swift to the rotation on the upcoming two-game road trip. That means someone else's minutes will decrease, however, and all of the bigs say they're cool with that. "What I say is, 'It's the NBA, if that man is hot and he's got it going, keep him in there. If I got it going, keep me in there,'" Wilcox said. "Robert is another plus for us. He takes up a lot of room down in the block and it will open up a lot of offense with the defensive rebounding."

GREEN OUT: Sonics F Jeff Green reports that his left ankle looks like the right one, which is good. But he's going to miss his second consecutive game due to suffering the left ankle sprain. He said sitting out on Saturday was hard, but "I tried to be a coach out there and help my teammates." Sonics coach P.J. Carlesimo said F Damien Wilkins will continue to start and that Wally Szczerbiak (right ankle) is back in the rotation.

Here are tonight's starters:

Sonics
F Damien Wilkins
F Chris Wilcox
C Kurt Thomas
G Kevin Durant
G Earl Watson

Bulls
F Joakim Noah
F Ben Wallace
C Andres Nocioni
G Thabo Sefolosha
G Kirk Hinrich

The officials are Greg Willard, Tony Brothers, and Tony Brown.

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