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    NBA Game Summary - Chicago at Brooklyn



    (Saturday, May 4th)

    Final Score: Chicago 99, Brooklyn 93

    Brooklyn, NY (Sports Network) - Down two starters and forced to take the road for a do-and-die game against an opponent with renewed life, the Chicago Bulls appeared to be out of gas.

    As it turned out, they had just enough left in the tank.

    Sparked by a gutsy 24-point, 14-rebound performance from Joakim Noah, the Bulls overcame the absences of Luol Deng and Kirk Hinrich and advanced to the Eastern Conference semifinals with a determined 99-93 victory over the Brooklyn Nets at the Barclay Center.

    Noah made good on 12-of-17 field goal attempts while playing 41 minutes on an ailing foot, while Marco Belinelli poured in a critical 24 points of his own while stepping in for Deng, who began the day in a Chicago hospital after experiencing complications from a spinal tap. Hinrich, meanwhile, sat out a third straight game due to an injured left calf.

    "I don't know what [Noah] did, but he did something, and his foot started feeling better," said Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau afterward.

    Their efforts, along with a 17-point outing from Carlos Boozer, enabled Chicago to win a Game 7 on the road for the first time in franchise history and earn a date with defending NBA champion Miami in the second round. The Bulls will visit the Heat for Game 1 on Monday.

    "We know how good Miami is," Thibodeau remarked. "We're going to have to be at our very best right from the start."

    Hosting their first-ever Game 7 playoff matchup, the Nets managed to cut a 17- point halftime deficit down to four in the third quarter, but couldn't overcome their early hole and failed to sustain the momentum built from two straight victories in the series that forced the winner-take-all showdown.

    "We didn't want to go out like this," said Nets center Brook Lopez. "We competed, we got better this season and we achieved a lot of our goals, but not all of them."

    Deron Williams scored 24 points and Gerald Wallace had 19 for the fourth- seeded Nets. Lopez added 21 points and nine rebounds, but was held to 9-of-20 shooting in the loss.

    Joe Johnson had an even tougher time against Chicago's tight defense, managing just six points on a forgettable 2-of-14 night.

    Holding a slim 42-38 edge midway through the second quarter, the Bulls broke the game open by putting together a 15-2 run and dominating the final six minutes of the half.

    Noah was the driving force behind the surge, netting three of his eight opening-half baskets during the pivotal 13-point swing, which the gritty center capped with a short jumper that staked Chicago to a commanding 57-40 advantage with a minute to go before the intermission.

    "He's in unbelievable shape and he can make plays that very few can," said Thibodeau.

    The Bulls shot a sizzling 62 percent from the floor during the second quarter, which ended on a thunderous dunk from Boozer off a Nate Robinson feed that sent Chicago into the break up by a commanding 61-44 count.

    That margin soon became less comfortable, however, as the Nets turned it up a notch coming out of the locker room with their season on the line.

    Williams drained a 3-pointer to key a 7-1 flurry to begin the second half, and Wallace buried triples on back-to-back possessions shortly afterward to trim the lead to 67-60 with 7:37 remaining in the third quarter. Wallace later fed Lopez for an easy dunk that pulled Brooklyn within 69-64, and Williams made it a four-point game after hitting 1-of-2 from the line with 5:29 left in the stanza.

    Brooklyn never got any closer, however. The Bulls' Jimmy Butler knocked down a clutch trey after Williams' foul shots, and Robinson drove the lane and scored on Chicago's following series to push the lead to 74-65. The Bulls entered the final quarter holding an 82-75 cushion.

    A Boozer layup with 7:08 remaining restored a double-digit differential at 86-76, but the Nets made one last gasp when Williams followed a Lopez tip-in with a 3-pointer that brought the hosts within five with six minutes to play.

    Brooklyn still trailed by five entering the final minute, but Johnson and Williams both misfired twice from beyond the arc down the stretch and Belinelli sank four straight free throws to close out the win.

    After trading baskets with the Nets for much of the first quarter, Chicago began to create some distance near the period's end. A Taj Gibson bucket just before the buzzer gave the Bulls a 29-25 lead at the conclusion of the frame, igniting a 7-0 burst that Belinelli culminated with a 3-point play just over a minute into the second that extended the margin to nine.

    Brooklyn scored the next six points to close the gap, but failed to match the Bulls' execution and intensity over the remainder of the half.

    Game Notes

    Chicago entered the contest 0-6 all-time in Game 7's as the road team ... The Nets were playing only the second Game 7 in their history, having fallen to Detroit in the 2004 Eastern Conference semis ... Brooklyn's Reggie Evans pulled down 13 rebounds in the loss ... Only eight teams have previously come back from a 3-1 deficit to win an NBA playoff series, with Phoenix the last to accomplish the feat against the Los Angeles Lakers in 2006 ... The Bulls faced the Heat in the 2011 East finals, which Miami won in five games.

    05/04 23:19:58 ET

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    Welcome to Great38 Tampa Bay WTTA-TV/DT - WFLA News Channel 8

    Welcome to Great38 Tampa Bay WTTA-TV/DT - WFLA News Channel 8

      St Pete pet shelter reminds about vaccination Video included

      Updated:

      Natalia Lima from Friends of Strays brought Vixen by the studio to remind us of the importance of vaccinating your pets. More>>

      • Great Stuff

      Pinellas deputy who broke up beach fight tells how he did it Video included

      Updated:

      Pinellas County Sheriff's deputy Sgt. Bryan Bingham went viral a few weeks ago when a video surfaced of him breaking up a fight on St. Pete Beach. More>>

      New centre opens doors to business women in Tampa Bay Video included

      Updated:

      Florida ranks fourth in the country for the number of women-owned businesses, contributing $77.4 billion to the state's economy. More>>

      Enter to win tickets to Nitro Jam

      The Great 38 is giving tickets to Nitro Jam. Enter below for your chance to win. More>>

      8 fun things to do in Tampa Bay this weekend | March 14-15 Video included

      Updated:

      See 8 fun events happening in Tampa Bay this weekend! More>>

      News Now: Charity Polo Classic Video included

      Updated:

      Every year, Morgan Auto Group hosts their annual Charity Polo Classic. It's an event unlike any other in this area.This year, it is taking place on March 21st and benefits Big Brothers Big Sisters of Tampa Bay and Children's Cancer Center. More>>

      Celebrating Music Education Spirit Week Video included

      Updated:

      We are celebrating kids who rock with Music Education Spirit Week! Lorri Naylor, a Lowry Elementary School teacher and a part of the Hillsborough County Elementary Music Educators Council, fills us in on the festivities.
      More>>

      USF 'Young Innovator' creates anti-bully band Video included

      Updated:

      Every year, USF holds their Young Innovator Competition, encouraging kids between kindergarten and 8th grade to invent something new or improve upon something that already exists. Meet Alexis Martin, this year's winner. The Anti-Bully Band she invented is her plan to stop bullying. More>>

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      Updated:

      In 2010, James Santella, a firefighter from Spring Hill, started having trouble putting his gear on. Shortly after, he was diagnosed with ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease.
      More>>

      Boys and Girls Clubs of the Suncoast 'Youth of the Year'

      Updated:

      Boys and Girls Clubs play a vital role in communities across the country. Here in the Bay Area, the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Suncoast serve as a safe place for local kids to learn and grow. Each year, they select somebody who promotes service to the club and shows strong moral character and academic success as their Youth of the Year. Recently, Kassindjaa Montague was given this honor. She sits down with Jenn to tell us her story. More>>

      Out and About
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      200 South Parker Street, Tampa, FL 33606

      Telephone: 813.228.8888
      Fax: 813.225.2770
      Email: news@wfla.com

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