Rapid Reaction: Bulls 99, Grizzlies 96

March, 25, 2011
3/25/11
9:48
PM CT
Friedell By Nick Friedell
ESPNChicago.com
Archive
CHICAGO -- Let's take a quick look at how the Chicago Bulls outlasted the Memphis Grizzlies, 99-96, on Friday night at the United Center.

How it happened: Derrick Rose scored 24 points and Luol Deng had 23 as the Bulls picked up another win. They now lead the Boston Celtics by two games for the top spot in the Eastern Conference. Deng kept the Bulls in the game early by scoring 16 points in the first half, giving his team the offensive boost it needed. As usual, Rose closed things out late by driving to the rim for a layup and getting fouled with 10.8 seconds left.

What it means: The Bulls didn't even play that well and they still won. That's the scariest part about this team for the rest of the league and the reason Tom Thibodeau's bunch feels like it can win every game it plays. The Bulls struggled to find any rhythm on either end of the floor early on but managed to tighten things up defensively when they had to. This was not the prettiest game of the season by any stretch, but the Bulls don't care. With just 11 regular-season games left, the Bulls appear to be in the driver's seat for the No. 1 seed.

Stats of the night: The Bulls had 29 second-chance points to the Grizzlies’ 15.

What's next: The Bulls close out yet another back-to-back on Saturday night when they face off against the Milwaukee Bucks. They'll be looking for their fourth win in a row.

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
Jimmy Butler
PTS AST STL MIN
21.7 3.3 1.5 40.0
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsP. Gasol 11.4
AssistsD. Rose 4.9
StealsJ. Butler 1.5
BlocksP. Gasol 2.0