Monday, April 22, 2013
Rapid Reaction: Bulls 90, Nets 82
By Nick Friedell
NEW YORK -- Here's a quick look at how the Chicago Bulls pulled out a 90-82 victory over the Brooklyn Nets on Monday night at Barclays Center to even their Eastern Conference quarterfinals series 1-1:
How it happened: Luol Deng bounced back in a major way after a poor Game 1 performance, scoring 15 points with nine rebounds and four assists. Carlos Boozer added 13 points and 12 rebounds, while Joakim Noah gutted out 11 points, 10 rebounds and three assists in 26 minutes. The Bulls' defense was on point throughout the game and frustrated the Nets from beginning to end.
What it means: The Bulls were embarrassed about their performance in their Game 1 loss on Saturday and played with the type of edge that has become their trademark over the past few seasons. Deng set an early hard-nosed tone that his teammates followed while Boozer racked his usual double-double. The key for the Bulls was their defense on Deron Williams, who had 22 points in Game 1. Kirk Hinrich stayed in control on Williams and the Bulls were able to control the tempo in the process. They didn't allow the Nets to get easy run-outs and they made sure they kept their defensive intensity up their entire game. The Bulls did exactly what they wanted to do before they left Chicago -- they grabbed a game on the road and stole home-court advantage. They believed they could win this series before it started, and that confidence will be even higher after they pulled together to win this one.
Hits: The Bulls shot 48.1 percent from the field.
Misses: Williams was just 1-for-9 from the field.
Stat of the night: After being outscored 56-36 in the paint in Game 1, the Bulls outscored the Nets 42-30 on Monday.
What's next: Game 3 is at 7:30 p.m. CT on Thursday at the United Center.