- Nick Friedell, Chicago Bulls beat reporter
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How it happened: Derrick Rose finished with 26 points, five rebounds and six assists, and took over the game at times down the stretch as the Bulls earned one of their best wins of the season. After a quiet first half, Luol Deng erupted in the second, finishing with 20 points, 18 of which came in the second half, and 10 rebounds. Dwyane Wade had 34 points and LeBron James finished with 29, but they were the only two members of the Heat who had any rhythm. Chris Bosh was 1-for-18 on the night.
What it means: The Bulls always knew they were an elite-level contender in the NBA, and now for the second time in a week, they've proved it. They beat a Heat squad that was out for blood, and they did it by shutting Miami down defensively in the second half. After such a lackadaisical effort Wednesday night in Toronto, Tom Thibodeau has to be pleased with the way his team bounced back.
Stat of the night: The Bulls' bench outscored the Heat's bench by a 22-2 margin.
What's next: The Bulls head to Milwaukee to face off against the Bucks on Saturday night. With the emotional boost they gained Thursday night, they should be very confident against Andrew Bogut and company.
The Chicago Bulls proved they're an elite team by beating the Heat.