Rapid Reaction: Bulls 87, Heat 86

March, 6, 2011
3/06/11
2:44
PM CT


MIAMI -- Let's take a quick look at how the Chicago Bulls scratched out an 87-86 win over the Miami Heat on Sunday afternoon at the American Airlines Arena.

How it happened: Derrick Rose had 27 points and made several big plays down the stretch as the Bulls picked up their most emotional win of the season. Dwyane Wade missed a shot at the buzzer that would have won the game and the Bulls bench erupted in joy. Luol Deng had a big day of his own with 18 points, including hitting three of four clutch free throws in the final 20 seconds.

What it means: The Bulls are legit. It wasn't that they didn't believe that before, it's just that after road wins in Orlando and Miami there is absolutely no doubt in their minds now. Rose scored eight points in the fourth quarter and his teammates fed off his energy. The Bulls defense proved that it has the ability to slow down the Heat's big three just enough to get the job done. The Bulls' confidence is at a season high after this win.

Stats of the night: The Bulls outscored the Heat 36-30 in the paint and outrebounded them 36-30.

What's next: The Bulls are right back at it Monday night when they face off against the New Orleans Hornets. It will be interesting to see how they rein in their emotions the night after such a huge win.

Nick Friedell | email

Chicago Bulls beat reporter
Nick Friedell is the Chicago Bulls beat reporter for ESPN Chicago. Friedell is a graduate of the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University and joined ESPNChicago.com for its launch in April 2009.

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TEAM LEADERS

POINTS
Derrick Rose
PTS AST STL MIN
15.9 4.3 0.5 31.1
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsJ. Noah 11.3
AssistsJ. Noah 5.4
StealsJ. Butler 1.9
BlocksJ. Noah 1.5