NBA Game Summary - Chicago at Charlotte
(Friday, March 31st)
Final Score: Chicago 113, Charlotte 105
Charlotte, NC (Sports Network) - Andres Nocioni posted 24 points and 11 rebounds as Chicago beat Charlotte, 113-105, at Charlotte Bobcats Arena.
Luol Deng scored 21 points for the Bulls, who have won three of four. Chris Duhon scored 19 points, and Mike Sweetney scored 12. Kirk Hinrich added 11 points.
Jumaine Jones scored 28 points for the Bobcats, who have dropped four of five. Gerald Wallace notched 26 points and 12 boards, while Raymond Felton had 15 points and 10 assists and Brevin Knight had 15 points and nine assists. Bernard Robinson added 10 points.
Chicago is still 1 1/2 games behind the Philadelphia 76ers for the eighth and final playoff spot in the East, as the Sixers concurrently beat the Knicks.
"Every game is important for us," Duhon said. "We have to treat every game like a playoff game."
After Duhon opened the third period with a layup, Chicago led by its largest lead of the game at 26 points. However, Charlotte went on a 12-0 run highlighted by five points by Knight to trail 69-55 with 8:04 to go.
The Bulls led 83-70 heading into the final stanza, in which Charlotte managed to only cut the deficit by five for the final margin.
"The alarm clock didn't go off until the second half," Charlotte coach Bernie Bickerstaff said. "We didn't match their intensity on defense. We got hung up in fool's gold. Some shots were going in but we didn't stop anybody."
Chicago went on a 14-0 run capped by a Deng reverse layup with 2:39 left for a 31-21 lead, and held a 33-25 advantage heading into the second quarter.
Chicago closed the second stanza on an 11-0 spurt sparked by a Malik Allen jumper with 2:12 remaining to lead 67-43 at halftime.
Chicago outscored Charlotte 44-14 in first-half points in the paint.
"It was a tale of two halves," Chicago coach Scott Skiles said. "We played well in the first half, they played well in the second. We made our free throws down the stretch. We fought them off, and kept them at bay."
The Bulls now will take their postseason hopes back home to host Boston on Saturday and Indiana on Tuesday. Chicago is 16-19 at the United Center this season.
Charlotte, which is 1-1 on a four-game homestand, will next host Cleveland and Minnesota. The Bobcats are 14-22 at home this season.
Tonight's matchup between Chicago and Charlotte was the fourth and final meeting of the season. The teams split the four-game series...Charlotte had a two-game winning streak snapped.
03/31 22:49:41 ET