--As rough as the Bulls' backcourt was -- Derrick Rose and Ben Gordon combined for 60 points, including a season-high 27 from the rookie point guard Rose -- Mike Woodson's constant hammering of his players about their inept defense was even rougher."He talked about us the whole game," Joe Johnson said. "We had to hear his mouth the whole game. When it's all said and done and we've won the game, he's a little bit better. But we're going to have to hear it from him again (Sunday at practice)."
Even after watching the film, Woodson will have a hard time finding the holes in his team's performance. Sure, the Hawks gave up more points than they have all season. But they also scored their own season high.
"This was just one of those offensive explosions we had tonight," Woodson said. "You're going to have games like this. And you have to give (the Hawks) credit. This is the first time all year we didn't hold a team under 33 or 34 percent from the 3-point line. They shot 60 percent from the 3-point line. Our offense was just solid tonight, probably the best it's been all season.
"Everybody was clicking on all cylinders. It was just an offensive performance on both sides. But in the fourth quarter, we held them to 22 points, so our defense did pick up when we really had to buckle down."
--PF Josh Smith had just three blocked shots in the four games prior to Saturday, a stunning development for one of the league's best shot blockers.
But Smith admitted before the Chicago game that he is playing on a sore left ankle that has been bothering him for some time.
"I didn't re-injure myself or anything," Smith said of the high ankle sprain he suffered four games into the season, an injury that cost him 12 games after that. "I'm just not able to get that explosive lift off my left leg the way I'm used to. It's a little more work than I'm used to, but I'm adjusting to it."
--Forget the shot clocks and scoreboards, there's a new glitch in the festivities at Philips Arena. And this one can't be blamed on the Hawks' stat crew.
Just minutes into Saturday's game, lead official Monty McCutchen had to call an official's timeout so someone could be dispatched to the catwalk high above the arena to investigate a leak that was dripping on the floor near midcourt.
The delay lasted just a little over two minutes, but the dripping had to be monitored the entire game.
QUOTE TO NOTE: "They're one of the better teams in the East right now, and the reason why is it's hard to stop Joe, and the rest of the team is very athletic." -- Chicago coach Vinny Del Negro, after his team failed to slow the Hawks down Saturday night.