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Saturday, April 20, 2013
Joakim Noah: I'll play in Game 2

By Nick Friedell
ESPNChicago.com

NEW YORK -- Chicago Bulls center Joakim Noah started Game 1 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals against the Brooklyn Nets on Saturday, and after playing 13 minutes on his injured left foot, said he will play in Game 2.

"Hell yeah, I'll be out there," Noah said after the Bulls' 106-89 loss.

Noah, who has battled plantar fasciitis in his foot for the past few months, did not sound optimistic about his chances to play after Friday's practice, but things turned around for him between Saturday morning's shootaround and game time, and said his aching foot is feeling better.

"I think it will get better," said Noah, who iced his foot before he took a shower, then iced it again after. "I'm just excited for Monday. I'm not worried about (the foot)."

Noah had four points on 2-of-6 shooting along with five rebounds but his limited minutes left the Bulls at a disadvantage against Nets center Brook Lopez, who had 21 points.

"It was disappointing," he said. "We didn't play well at all. We didn't come out with the right mindset and they scored way too many points in the paint and we didn't execute well offensively. But we got to bounce back. It's no time to feel sorry for ourselves. I think that we've shown great resiliency all year and I think we got a lot of basketball left."

Bulls guard Kirk Hinrich also left the game after suffering a left thigh bruise late in the third quarter that kept him out the rest of the way.

"I'm doing all right," Hinrich said. "I caught a knee, and it took me a little bit to walk it off."

Game 2 is at 8 p.m. ET Monday in Brooklyn.