The Chicago Bulls are on the brink of elimination, but they pulled off a grinding 77-69 win against the Philadelphia 76ers on Tuesday to keep their first round 2012 NBA Playoffs series going even without Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah. Carlos Boozer (19 points, 13 rebounds, six assists) and Luol Deng (24 points, eight rebounds) provided the scoring punch for an otherwise impotent offense, while everyone chipped in for a dominating defensive effort in which the Sixers only managed 32.1 percent shooting.
At SB Nation's Bulls blog, Blog-A-Bull, the credit was handed out to just about everyone, but Taj Gibson and Ronnie Brewer made the biggest impact on the defensive end:
Taj Gibson and Ronnie Brewer were everywhere in this game, getting to those 50/50 balls (though they were outrebounded as a team yet again) and proving that the effort gap could stay on their team's side. Asik and Lucas contributed to that overall dominance in that intangible category, but Brewer had 3 steals, and Gibson had 4 blocks in the 2nd quarter alone. Unfortunately Gibson also became the latest Bull to be felled by injury, spraining his ankle pretty badly in the second half. Taj did return to the game, and though it brought some emotion, it was with little else: his injury didn't look as bad as what Joakim Noah suffered in game three, but we've seen similar sprains in the past where a player can come back in that game but is unable to the next after a night of swelling.
For more on this game, stick with SB Nation Chicago. For more on the Bulls, head over to Blog a Bull. Additional 76ers analysis can be found at Liberty Ballers. For more news, notes and analysis from around the NBA, visit SB Nation's NBA news hub.