WASHINGTON -- Even with the teams "X-factor" suspended, the Washington Wizards had a No. Dave Kingman Jersey . 42 sitting next to the bench. The 57-year-old with greying hair couldnt box out or grab a rebound, but owner Ted Leonsis waved his red towel and egged on a cheering crowd that chanted "Free Nene!" The Wizards did just fine without the suspended Brazilian forward. They scored the first 14 points and beat the Chicago Bulls 98-89 on Sunday to take a 3-1 lead in the Eastern Conference series. "I thought it was pretty hilarious that Ted had Nenes jersey on," Wizards guard Bradley Beal said. "It kind of threw me off for a minute, but then I looked and seen it was Ted." Nene or not, the Wizards did what theyve done all series: Take a quick lead and force the Bulls to use up energy trying to catch up. It was 15-8 in Game 3, 29-12 in Game 2, 19-13 in Game 1. Washington, seeking to win a playoff series for only the third time since the 1970s, can finish off the Bulls on the road in Game 5 on Tuesday night. "We keep seeing this same kind of start for the last couple of games, and its frustrating," said Taj Gibson, who came off the bench to lead the Bulls with a career-high 32 points. "It seems like at times we get overhyped with just thinking were going to be OK, were just that good. But in this league its not about how talented you are, its about how hard you work and how much effort you put when you start the game off, and I dont think we did that." Nene was suspended for the game after grabbing Jimmy Butlers head in the fourth quarter of the Wizards Game 3 loss. Wall called Nene the "X-factor" this week, and for good reason: Since the March 2012 trade that brought Nene to D.C., Washington is 65-63 when he plays and 21-41 when he doesnt. That said, the club did hold its own by winning 12 of 21 when Nene went down with a knee injury late in the regular season, an absence coach Randy Wittman said might have been a "blessing in disguise" that helped prepare them for Sunday. "I saw our guys bond together," Wittman said. "Like, Thats OK, all right. Big fellows not going to be here, but thats OK. And we were in tune right from the start." Trevor Ariza, getting some of the early looks that might have gone to Nene, scored a career playoff-high 30 points, making 6 of 10 3-pointers. Beal had 18 points, and John Wall added 15 points and 10 assists for the Wizards, who forced 16 turnovers and committed only six. "I think were a smart enough group to understand that when one of your pieces goes down, you have to find ways and will to win," Ariza said. "Tonight was my night to take on the scoring load." Gibson went 13 for 16 from the field for Chicago, but his teammates combined to go 22 for 62. He made more field goals in the first half (8) than the rest of the Bulls combined (7). Mike Dunleavy, who scored 35 points in Game 3, scored only six. Dunleavy jammed his left thumb attempting to take a charge in the fourth quarter. The thumb was swollen and was X-rayed after the game, but he said he didnt think it was broken. "It probably doesnt really matter," he said. "Its my left hand and its not going to make a difference for me." Chicagos Kirk Hinrich committed four turnovers, and NBA Defensive Player of the Year Joakim Noah had a quiet 10 points and 15 rebounds against the Nene-less frontcourt. Washington stormed to a 14-0 lead, with Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau calling a timeout after each Wizards "touchdown." "Very disappointing to get in a hole like that," Thibodeau said. "I put that on me, and Ive got to get it right. ... Its got to change or our season will be over." Trevor Booker started in Nenes spot and had nine rebounds and three blocks. Beal called Booker "a huge X-factor" -- apparently the Wizards are cornering the market on that particular commodity. "Just because they didnt have Nene," Gibson said, "they just came out and played even harder." Notes: Arizas six 3-pointers tied a Wizards playoff record. ... Wittman, who played during the Detroit Pistons "Bad Boys" era, was asked to compare todays game to those rough-and-tumble days. "Not even close," Wittman said. "Its like sixth-grade flag football compared to NFL tackle football." Terry Kennedy Jersey .com) - Carmelo Anthony tallied 31 points to help the New York Knicks continue their improved play of late with a 100-92 victory over a short-handed Oklahoma City Thunder squad. Joe Carter Jersey . The 19-year-old Swiss centre back will initially have to impress in Uniteds reserve side to earn a spot in the first team. Veseli says "Manchester United has a long history of younger players coming through and hopefully I can follow and do the same.Bolton Wanderers have fined and disciplined midfielder Liam Trotter and David Wheater for an offensive gesture. The pair were also warned as to their future conduct after they were caught on camera sticking up their middle fingers as they walked into Brentfords Griffin Park stadium prior to their Championship fixture on Tuesday.Wanderers subsequently lost the game 3-1 and will be relegated to League One if they are beaten by Derby at the weekend. Highlights of the Championship match between Brentford and Bolton at Griffin Park A statement on the clubs website read: Bolton Wanderers takes the conduct of its players and staff extremely seriously and will not tolerate such behaviour. San Diego Padres Store. The club would like to apologise for any offence caused by the incident. Liam Trotter spent time on loan at Nottm Forest earlier in the season Trotter later offered his apologies for the incident.He told the Bolton News: I apologise wholeheartedly - it wasnt anything aimed at the fans or the club.It was a silly prank, but unfortunately it went out live which we didnt know about. But it shouldnt have happened and I accept that we have to be better than that.Bolton, who were recently saved from administration and taken over by former player Dean Holdsworth and his Sports Shield Consortium, are bottom of the Championship with 26 points from 30 matches. Also See: Bolton video Bolton fixtures Bolton stats Bet ￡5 Get ￡20 Free ' ' '