Chicago Bulls Vs. Indiana Pacers: Heading To Eastern Conference Heights

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Carlos Boozer Posts Double Double, Bulls Beat Pacers 110-89

Chicago, IL (Sports Network) – Carlos Boozer recorded a double-double with 24 points and 10 rebounds, as the Chicago Bulls handled the Indiana Pacers, 110-89, at the United Center.

Derrick Rose added 20 points and seven assists for the Bulls, who reached the 100-point plateau for the first time in 14 games.

Luol Deng chipped in with 19 points, eight assists and six boards for Chicago, which has won five straight. Kyle Korver donated 16 points off the bench.

Bulls forward Taj Gibson twisted his right ankle in the fourth quarter. The severity of the injury is not yet known.

Josh McRoberts scored a career-high 20 points and pulled down eight rebounds for the Pacers, who have dropped seven of eight. Danny Granger tallied 19 points and six boards.

Trailing by eight, 25-17, late in the first quarter, Chicago ended the period on an 8-2 flurry. Gibson’s two free throws cut the gap to 27-25 after 12 minutes of action.

Holding a 43-42 edge midway through the second frame, the Bulls ripped off eight straight points. Kurt Thomas’ layup and jumper made it 51-42. It was 55-51 at the break.

Chicago, which led by as many as nine in the third, took a 77-72 lead into the fourth.

The Bulls scored the first six points of the fourth to build an 83-72 margin.

Ahead 92-82 with under six minutes to play, Chicago ripped off 10 unanswered points to make it a 20-point contest with less than 3 1/2 minutes left.

Game Notes

Chicago has taken six of its last seven games with the Pacers, including three meetings this season…The Bulls improved to a gaudy 23-4 in the Windy City this season…Indiana was without forward Tyler Hansbrough (pneumonia) and guard Brandon Rush (sprained right ankle)…Pacers head coach Jim O’Brien was ejected with 3:23 left in the fourth…Indiana center Jeff Foster surpassed 5,000 rebounds for his career. He ended with 10 boards and four points.


Derrick Rose Named Bulls CDW/IBM Player Of The Month For January

For the second time this season (also November), Derrick Rose has been named Bulls Player of the Month, and January isn’t even over yet — the final game of the month will be tonight.

In 15 games so far this month, D-Rose started every game and averaged a team-high 25.9 points per game and 7.4 assists per game. He also pulled down 4.3 rebounds per game during January. He shot .42 from the field, .349 from three-point land and .887 from the free throw line. Rose had 13 games with more than 20 points and three games with over 30. He also posted his first career triple-double and five double-doubles. In addition to this team honor, he was also named the NBA Eastern Conference Player of the Week (for games played Jan. 10-16).

Congrats to D-Rose, who is piling up honors in what could be an MVP season.


Chicago Bulls Vs. Indiana Pacers: Heading To Eastern Conference Heights

The Bulls' 99-90 win over the Orlando Magic last night tied them with the Miami Heat for the second-best record in the Eastern Conference, 32-14, 3.5 games behind the Boston Celtics.

It seems generally accepted around the NBA that the Western Conference is the stronger half of the league, although that may have evened out a bit this season. Each conference has the same number of teams currently with 30 or more wins -- five -- and the Bulls held their own when they went on the "Circus Trip" out west in November, and that was before Carlos Boozer had played a single game. On the other hand, the eighth spot in the East now belongs to the 76ers, who are six games under .500.

Considering all the injuries -- to Boozer, to the still-sidelined Joakim Noah, and the ulcers now afflicting Derrick Rose -- it's pretty remarkable that the Bulls are on their way to their best record since the end of the Michael Jordan era. Their current pace would give them 57 wins and it's not inconceivable that they might pull off a 60-win season, something they have done only five times in their history.

The Pacers, who are 6-15 on the road, blasted the Nets at home last night. But then, that was at home, and it's the Nets, who are awful. Mediocre as the Pacers are, they are only 1.5 games behind the Sixers for that last playoff spot. The Bulls should win this game, which would mean 13 wins in their last 14 home games.

Tonight's game begins at 7 p.m. CST and will be televised on WGN, both locally and on WGN America.

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