Monday, 16 May 2011

Bulls storm off to a 103-82 win over Heat in Game 1

Posted by chardyboy on Monday, May 16, 2011 0 comments


Derrick Rose has 28 points and six assists to lead Chicago to victory in Eastern Conference finals opener.

 Reporting from Chicago

If this is a preview of what's to come, the NBA should consider making this a best-of-nine series. Or how about 11?

The Bulls took a 1-0 lead in the Eastern Conference finals in an enthralling game that featured eight ties and nine lead changes, numerous dunks and Dwyane Wade head fakes, a big night from Chris Bosh but a bigger one from Derrick Rose.

Rose scored 28 points and dished out six assists as the Bulls stormed to a 103-82 victory.

Game 2 will be Wednesday at the United Center as Oprah Winfrey takes over the building Monday and Tuesday for her farewell television shows.

The Heat entered as the series favorites even though the Bulls have home-court advantage and won all three regular-season meetings.

Those three games were decided by a total of eight points; this one was over midway through the fourth quarter.

Typical for a team that might be the deepest in the NBA, the Bulls got strong contributions from their reserves.

Forward Taj Gibson posterized Wade with a thunderous slam and three-point play in the second quarter. Swingman Ronnie Brewer scored four straight in the fourth after making a steal and drawing a clear-path foul. And point guard C.J. Watson launched a contested 23-foot fling to beat the shot clock that gave the Bulls an 83-66 lead and left Heat defender Jamaal Magloire with his head down.

Miami actually outshot the Bulls, hitting 47.1 percent. But Chicago hit 10 of 21 from three-point land and crushed the Heat in assists (23-11) and rebounds (45-33).

Booed throughout the game, James scored just 15 points on 5-for-15 shooting and got outplayed by the man guarding him, Luol Deng (21 points).

Miami's most productive player was Bosh, who has been more of a third wheel than a third Musketeer. He scored 30 points and had nine rebounds.

Perhaps Bosh drew some added motivation from Carlos Boozer's comment last week that Miami has "two great players" in Wade and James.

Two of Bosh's points came on a right-handed slam over Boozer in the third quarter. But Chicago owned the third, outscoring the visitors 24-15 and taking a 72-63 lead on a Luol Deng three-pointer.

Miami jumped out to a 19-11 lead about two hours after Heat Coach Erik Spoelstra said he expected a sluggish start: "There will be lot of emotion to start this game. At some point, a basketball game will break out."

Spoelstra's Bulls counterpart, Tom Thibodeau, could not disagree: "They're a strong defensive team, and we'd like to think we're a strong defensive team. Baskets will be hard to get."

That wasn't so much the case for the Heat. Their first five buckets were launched within a few feet of the rim – a Wade dunk, a James slam, a Bosh put-back, a Bosh layup and a driving layup by Mike Bibby.

But Gibson's slam over Wade tied the score early in the second quarter, and the Bulls dominated the second half.


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