Chicago Bulls Vs. Toronto Raptors: Derrick Rose And Bulls Win Fifth Straight

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Bulls Win 111-91, Led By Luol Deng's 24 And Carlos Boozer's Double Double

Chicago, IL (Sports Network) – Luol Deng scored a game-best 24 points as Chicago easily cruised past Toronto, 111-91, at the United Center.

Derrick Rose had 19 points and six assists, while Carlos Boozer notched a double-double with 12 points and 13 boards for the Bulls, who finished out 4-0 in a four-game homestand and have won five straight overall.

Chicago had a healthy contribution from its bench — Taj Gibson posted 16 points and 14 rebounds, while Omer Asik and Ronnie Brewer had 13 and 12 points, respectively.

Toronto’s leading scorer Andrea Bargnani returned to action after missing four games with a sore calf. He finished with 23 points and six rebounds for the Raptors, who have lost eight of their last 10.

DeMar DeRozan had 18 points and Leandro Barbosa came off the bench for 15 points in the losing cause.

The Raptors opened the game with a 16-10 edge after an Amir Johnson three- point play. Deng led a quick six-point burst to knot the game at 16 and Chicago held a slim 29-27 margin at the end of the first quarter.

The Bulls scored the first five points of the second period and they made it a 10-point game, 43-33, with Brewer’s lay in. Chicago went on a 13-5 run during the last four minutes of the half, a run which was capped by Deng’s floater off the backboard with 6.2 seconds left to give the Bulls a 59-41 edge at the break.

The game remained in Chicago’s hands as the lead grew to 24, 65-41, with Kurt Thomas and Rose jumpers and a Deng dunk for the first scores of the second half.

Toronto cut the lead to 12 with an 18-3 run starting on Jerryd Bayless’ two free throws with 5 1/2 minutes left in the third. Ed Davis’ dunk concluded the run, however, Chicago kept its double digit lead, 81-69, heading into the final period.

The Bulls cruised the final 12 minutes and grew their lead back to 20 with 7:34 left to play after C.J. Watson’s layup. The margin hovered around the 20- point mark the rest of the way.

Game Notes

The Bulls have won three straight over the Raptors…Chicago is 15-3 at home this season,..Bayless scored 11 points and dished out eight assists…Asik posted season-high marks in both points and blocks (five).


Bulls Waive John Lucas III One Day Before Contract Deadline

If only the Bulls had done this sooner, or better yet, not signed him at all.

One day before all non-guaranteed contracts became guaranteed, the Bulls have waived guard John Lucas III. Lucas played in only two games for the Bulls, but one of them was in Denver; Lucas came into the game and missed a pair of free throws that would have given the Bulls a three-point lead with 12.9 seconds remaining. Instead, with only a one-point deficit, the NuggetsCarmelo Anthony missed one shot but got a second chance with four seconds left and drained a jumper that won the game for Denver.

And that is the legacy Lucas leaves with the Bulls. They’ll work with a 13-man roster, for now, going into tonight’s game with the Raptors. The Tribune reported today that Brian Scalabrine’s non-guaranteed deal will become guaranteed next Monday.


Chicago Bulls Vs. Toronto Raptors: Derrick Rose And Bulls Go For Fifth Straight

The Bulls enter tonight's game against the Raptors leading the Central division by eight games, having won 13 of their last 15, and among that stretch was a seven-game winning streak. So they'll be shooting for their second winning streak of the year of five games or more with a win over Toronto. What could go wrong?

Plenty. The Bulls took the Clippers lightly when they came to the UC on Dec. 18 and lost by one point to one of the league's worst road teams. Just about as bad, the Raptors have lost 12 of 16 road games. But Toronto defeated the Mavericks in Dallas on Dec. 28 -- another reason to never assume any game is an automatic win.

That said, if Derrick Rose can get his shooting percentage back in order and the Bulls can continue playing good defense (they have allowed 100+ points in only three of the 15 games on this current streak), they should get that fifth straight win.

Tonight's game begins at 7 p.m. CST and will be televised on CSN Chicago.

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