Regular Season Series (Game 3 of 3)

Series starts 12/1

Game 1: Saturday, December 1st
Game 2: Thursday, March 28th
Game 3: Monday, April 15th

Bulls 98

(21-60, 7-33 away)

76ers 96

(43-38, 22-19 home)

    Coverage: CSN

    7:00 PM ET, April 15, 2002

    Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia, PA

    1 2 3 4 T
    CHI 22 24 30 2298
    PHI 25 30 28 1396

    Top Performers

    Chi: J. Rose 32 Pts, 2 Reb, 2 Ast, 1 Stl, 1 Blk

    Phi: E. Snow 21 Pts, 4 Reb, 8 Ast, 1 Stl

    Sixers fall a half-game back of Magic

    PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- For the second straight year, the Chicago Bulls probably cost the Philadelphia 76ers home-court advantage in the playoffs.

    Jalen Rose

    Chicago's Jalen Rose scored 32 points and hit the winning free throws.

    Jalen Rose scored 32 points, including two foul shots with two seconds remaining, leading the Bulls to a 98-96 victory over the Sixers on Monday night.

    The Sixers fell a half-game behind Orlando for the No. 4 spot in the Eastern Conference. The Magic hold the tiebreaker -- a 3-1 record against Philadelphia this season -- should the teams finish even.

    Last year, Philadelphia lost at home to Chicago in their final regular season game, and it cost them the home-court edge against the Los Angeles Lakers in the NBA Finals.

    "Of course home court is important in a five-game series, but I'm not going to make guys play when they are hurt," Sixers coach Larry Brown said.

    Philadelphia, which clinched a playoff spot Sunday, rested center Dikembe Mutombo and also was without Allen Iverson (broken left hand), Aaron McKie (eye) and Derrick Coleman (hyperextended knee).

    Eric Snow scored 21 and little-used Jabari Smith added a career-high 14 for the Sixers, who could finish anywhere from fourth to seventh in the East.

    But Snow missed a 3-pointer at the buzzer that would've won it.

    "It's a letdown," said forward Corie Blount, who missed all seven of his shots while filling in for Coleman. "But in the Eastern Conference, it's not that important because everyone is so evenly matched."

    Jamal Crawford had 14 and Eddy Curry added 12 for the Bulls, who have won four of five.

    Travis Best's jumper gave Chicago its first lead of the second half, 92-91, with 1:45 left. After Derrick McKey hit a 10-footer, Rose drilled a runner to make it 95-94.

    Tyson Chandler made a free throw to give the Bulls a 96-94 lead. But Best fouled Snow behind the 3-point line, and Snow hit the first two free throws to tie it at 96 with 14.7 seconds left.

    Rose then got fouled by McKey on a driving layup, and hit both.

    "I played with him in Indiana," Rose said of McKey. "He's a great defensive player. Luckily, I got the call. It's a real good win for us, but it's hard to celebrate when you know you're not going to the playoffs."

    After trailing the entire second half, the Bulls got within 85-84 on a dunk by Curry midway through the fourth. Snow hit a jumper -- Philadelphia's first field goal in the fourth quarter -- to make it 87-84, but Rose made a free throw, and Marcus Fizer's putback tied it at 87 with 4:37 left.

    Smith, activated from the injured list before the game, has played just 10 games with the Sixers after being waived by Sacramento in December. He scored 12 points in the first half, but only had two rebounds in 15 minutes.

    "I've been sitting two months, watching and learning," Smith said. "I did good on one end, but not rebounding and defense."

    Philadelphia went on an 8-0 run, taking a 41-31 lead midway through the second quarter. A dunk by Smith made it 53-41, giving the Sixers their largest lead.

    "I was disappointed with the way we came out at the start," Bulls coach Bill Cartwright said. "With all of their players out, I didn't think our young guys came out with much intensity."

    Game notes

    The Sixers are 7-14 without Iverson, but were also missing McKie and Snow for five of those losses. They are 7-6 since Iverson hurt his hand on March 22. ... Chicago is 7-33 on the road, 2-11 against Atlantic Division opponents. The Bulls finished with a 14-27 home record, their best since the 1997-98 season. ... Philadelphia won the season series, 2-1. ... Sixers rookie Alvin Jones got his first start, and had a career-high eight points.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 98 96
    FGM-FGA 32-61 (.525) 35-83 (.422)
    3PM-3PA 4-8 (.500) 1-4 (.250)
    FTM-FTA 30-38 (.789) 25-29 (.862)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 9-37 19-37
    Assists 20 24
    Turnovers 23 17
    Steals 5 13
    Blocks 4 1
    Fast Break Points 3 6
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 23 (2/0) 27 (0/0)

    Top Performers

    Jalen Rose Rose
    Points: 32
    Reb: 2
    Ast: 2
    Stl: 1
    Blk: 1
    Eric Snow Snow
    Points: 21
    Reb: 4
    Ast: 8
    Stl: 1
    Blk: 0