"It was a typical first exhibition game," Bucks coach Scott Skiles said. "We turned the ball over way too much. We got too casual with [the ball]. We made some poor decisions with the ball. Defense was OK."
Joakim Noah of the Bulls had 10 points, six rebounds, a steal and an assist, one day after agreeing to a five-year contract extension worth $60 million.
Noah said it definitely felt good to play, but he knew that wasn't enough.
"In the beginning of the game, things were going like 1,000 mph," he said. "Obviously, I just got to keep working and understand where I'm going to get my shots. I think I have to do a better job defensively as well."
Luol Deng had 16 points and Derrick Rose added 13 for Chicago.
The Bulls shot 42.5 percent and were outrebounded 42-27, but they forced 24 turnovers and had 14 steals to Milwaukee's eight.
"The best thing about the game is we have another one in a couple of days," Noah said. "It's preseason, just clean it up and get better."
First-year Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau agreed.
"We need to clean up a lot of that [defense]," he said. "We let the ball go everywhere."
Drew Gooden and Keyon Dooling both had 12 points and Luc Mbah a Moute added 11 for Milwaukee. Larry Sanders, the team's first-round draft pick, finished with seven points, two rebounds and three fouls in just under 15 minutes.
"Guys are a lot bigger and stronger at every position," he said. "All the training I did this summer and being in Milwaukee helped me take an extra step toward getting ready for that physicality."
The Central Division rivals were each without a key player.
Carlos Boozer, the Bulls' major offseason acquisition, fractured the fifth metacarpal bone in his hand Saturday. Boozer, who said he fell over a bag at his home, underwent surgery on Tuesday and is expected to be out six to eight weeks.
Andrew Bogut sat out the game for the Bucks in a precautionary move after his surgically repaired right hand got smacked during practice Friday.
With six games left last season, Bogut slammed to the court after a fast-break dunk against Phoenix and fractured his right wrist and index finger and dislocated his right elbow. He underwent two surgeries within days and then rehabbed during the summer.
Chris Douglas-Roberts, a guard acquired in an offseason trade with New Jersey, had a tough debut with the Bucks. He started, but fouled out in the third quarter. He was 4 of 6 from the field and had 10 points, three rebounds, three assists and three turnovers.
Kyle Korver, a free agent who appeared in 52 game for Utah last season, came off the bench to score 11 points midway through the fourth quarter, including a 3-pointer that pulled Chicago within 82-81.
"It feels good to hit some shots in your first game," Korver said. "We got a long way to go. I made a lot of mistakes on both ends of the floor. It's the first preseason game. You don't take too much from it."
Boykins made all eight of his free throws and was 3 for 5 from the field.