Rapid Reaction: Bulls 98, Hawks 77

March, 28, 2012
3/28/12
8:51
PM CT
Friedell By Nick Friedell
ESPNChicago.com
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ATLANTA -- Let's take a quick look at how the Chicago Bulls rolled past the Atlanta Hawks 98-77 on Wednesday night at Philips Arena.

How it happened: Luol Deng led the Bulls with 22 points, Carlos Boozer added 20 points and nine rebounds and Taj Gibson might have had his best of the season scoring 19 points and grabbing six rebounds. The Bulls' bench played very well in this game outscoring the Hawks' bench 37-23.

What it means: The Bulls did exactly what they were supposed to do in this one. They took advantage of a tired Atlanta team that was playing its fifth game in six nights. After a sluggish start, they controlled the pace and ramped up the defensive intensity on the defensive end. Tom Thibodeau was very upset with the way his team has been playing of late, but he will be pleased with this effort. The Bulls defended, they rebounded and they took care of the ball. When they do that, they are tough to beat.

Stat of the night: The Bulls were 9-for-15 from beyond the 3-point arc.

Bold play of the night: The Bulls led most of the night, but they let a 54-42 lead turn into a slim 56-52 advantage early in the third quarter. That's when Thibodeau's team turned on the jets. The Bulls went on a 20-2 run at point and finished the quarter with a 16 point lead. That gave them a cushion they wouldn't give up.

What's next: The Bulls take on the Detroit Pistons Friday night at the United Center.


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
20.9 3.3 1.5 39.6
OTHER LEADERS
ReboundsP. Gasol 11.9
AssistsD. Rose 5.1
StealsJ. Butler 1.5
BlocksP. Gasol 1.9