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(Friday, April 11th)
Final Score: Chicago 106, Detroit 98
Chicago, IL (SportsNetwork.com) - D.J. Augustin had 12 of his 24 points in the fourth quarter and the Chicago Bulls rallied past the Detroit Pistons, 106-98, on Friday night.
Joakim Noah tallied six points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists, Carlos Boozer supplied 18 points and seven boards and Taj Gibson netted 11 of his 17 points in the final frame for Chicago, which locked up home-court advantage in their first round playoff series.
"With Augustin and Taj Gibson, it's like playing against seven starters. Augustin finishes every game for them and Gibson is as active and athletic as any power forward in the league," Pistons head coach John Loyer said.
The Bulls, who have won seven in a row, are one game ahead of Toronto for third place in the Eastern Conference following the Raptors' loss to the New York Knicks earlier on Friday.
"You have to win games differently. Obviously the rebounding and defense wasn't there, but I thought the offense was," Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau said.
Andre Drummond registered 26 points and 26 rebounds for the Pistons, who have dropped four of their last six tilts. Rodney Stuckey added 22 points in defeat.
Chicago trailed by 18 at the break and 83-75 early in the fourth before ripping off 15 straight to go in front. Augustin had eight points during the surge, including six consecutive at one point before Butler finished a backdoor layup to give the Bulls their first lead, 85-83, with 7:28 left since it was 2-0.
Augustin capped the burst with a pair of free throws for a 90-83 Bulls advantage midway through the frame. They held Detroit without a point for 4:30 during the swing.
Chicago, which outscored Detroit 36-18 in the final frame, pushed the lead up to as many as 10 down the stretch.
Earlier, the Pistons raced out to a 14-5 start and led 28-17 after a quarter of play before heading into the break with a 56-38 spread.
Stuckey's runner at the third-quarter buzzer gave Detroit an 80-70 lead.
The Bulls shot 49.4 percent (40-of-81) from the floor and sunk 21-of-23 foul shots ... Drummond had 13 points in the fourth ... Detroit held a 56-44 points in the paint advantage.
04/12 02:15:13 ET