NBA Game Summary - New York at Chicago
(Tuesday, April 19th)
Final Score: Chicago 92, New York 91
Chicago, IL (Sports Network) - Ben Gordon's jumper with 5.8 seconds left helped the Chicago Bulls defeat the New York Knicks, 92-91, at the United Center and in the process clinch home-court advantage for the first round of the Eastern Conference playoffs.
Kirk Hinrich had a career-high tying 34 points and Gordon ended with 16 for the Bulls, who secured the fourth seed and will host the fifth-seeded Washington Wizards in the first round. Washington lost to the New Jersey Nets on Tuesday, allowing the Bulls to move two games ahead with one game remaining.
"It's terrific to have the third best record in the East, only behind the world champs and a team with Shaq," said Gordon. "That's terrific after a 0-9 start."
"Yeah, (we're proud)," added Hinrich. "But we have to stay hungry. We can't be satisfied just making the playoffs."
Chris Duhon had 11 points and 10 assists for Chicago, which has won three straight and will end the regular season on Wednesday in Indiana.
"These times of the year, you have to find ways to win," said Duhon. "We stayed in the game. Kirk did a great job of carrying us and we were able to make some big plays down the stretch."
Jamal Crawford played his first game in Chicago since his offseason trade to New York and finished with 24 points, six assists and six rebounds. However, he missed two free throws with 11 seconds left that would have given his club a three-point lead. Then missed the potential game-winning jumper as time expired.
"I wasn't surprised," said Crawford on the boos he received. "When I was here, and I know there is no 'I' in team, we didn't go to the playoffs. This team has gotten it together and the fans were supporting them."
New York led 91-90 when Chicago inbounded the ball with 15 seconds on the clock. However, Tyson Chandler, who received the ball from the inbounder Hinrich, was called for an illegal pick when he handed the ball back to Hinrich to give the ball back to New York.
After the ensuing inbounds, Crawford was fouled with 11 seconds remaining, but the 85-percent shooter missed both from the stripe to keep the game at 91-90.
"It was unbelievable to me," said Crawford about missing the free throws. "I'm not sure what happened. I've been in that position before and made them. I like to come though for my team."
Chicago then called a timeout and on the inbounds Hinrich found Gordon, who took his defender off the dribble and hit the pull-up jumper with five seconds left.
The Knicks had one last chance, but Crawford's jumper as time expired bounced out and the Knicks lost all four games to the Bulls this season.
Stephon Marbury had 15 points, despite not playing most of the fourth quarter, for the Knicks, who have dropped two in a row. New York will end its disappointing campaign on Wednesday at Madison Square Garden against the Wizards.
The Knicks, who led 19-17 after one quarter and 43-36 at halftime, shot 46 percent for the game.
Chicago, which rallied to take a 69-68 lead going into the fourth quarter, hit 40 percent of its shots.
Chicago will appear in the postseason for the first time since Michael Jordan left the club after the 1998 season...Jannero Pargo had 10 points for Chicago...Kurt Thomas, Trevor Ariza and Maurice Taylor had 10 points apiece for the Knicks...The Bulls end the regular season 27-14 at home, winning six of eight...New York ended the campaign 11-30 on the road, losing eight of 11...The Knicks went 5-13 in Tuesday games this season.
04/20 00:12:34 ET