Notebook: Bulls 96, Nets 85

Posted Mar 2, 2013 11:59 PM

Kent McDill, for

THE FACTS: Using an aggressive defense that included frequent double-teams, the host Chicago Bulls downed the Brooklyn Nets 96-85 for their first two-game winning streak since Jan. 28-30. Following his historic triple-double game Thursday, Bulls center Joakim Noah scored 21 points and had 10 rebounds as well as five assists and four blocked shots to lead the Bulls. Carlos Boozer added 20 points for the Bulls. Brook Lopez had 22 points for the Nets, who have lost four of their last five games.

THE FACTS II: The Nets ran out to a 15-4 lead in the game's first four minutes as the Bulls got called for three quick fouls and a technical foul on Noah. The Bulls tied the game after one quarter and then took command after that.

QUOTABLE I: "I'm not doing anything different. It's just opportunities."
-- Bulls center Noah about his play the last two games.

THE STAT: The Nets had more field goals in the first quarter (12) than they had in the next two quarters (11). They had 27 points in the first quarter and only 32 in the second and third quarters combined.

THE STAT II: The Bulls shot 52 percent from the field and 100 percent from the free throw line (14-of-14).

TURNING POINT: The Bulls scored the last 15 points of the second quarter to go from a 39-38 deficit to a 53-39 lead at the half.

INJURY UPDATE: Bulls guard Rip Hamilton missed his second consecutive game with back spasms. Bulls guard Nate Robinson left the floor with six minutes left clutching his shoulder but came back to sit on the bench. Nets guard Joe Johnson played his second consecutive game after missing three games with a foot injury and scored 11 points in 37 minutes.

HOT: Noah was 10 of 13 from the field Saturday after going eight of 12 Thursday against Philadelphia.

NOT: Nets guard Deron Williams was 4 -of-12 from the field for 14 points. Bulls forward Deng was 3-of-10 from the field for eight points.

QUOTABLE II: "We weren't playing well, I'll give you that. But it's the circumstances."
-- Nets coach P.J. Carlesimo, pointing to the back-to-back scheduling and Johnson's continuing foot concerns.

BAD MOVE: Despite leading by as many as 20 points in the fourth quarter and never leading by less than 11. Bulls starting forward Deng played 44 minutes and Noah played 41. The Bulls play at Central Division rival Indiana Sunday night.

QUOTABLE III: "It's a big game because it's the next game."
-- Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau on the Indiana game coming up.

ROOKIE WATCH: Nets forward Mirza Teletovic scored nine points in 10 minutes, hitting 4-of-7 shots. He also had three rebounds.

NOTABLE: The Bulls are now in fifth place in the Eastern Conference playoff race, one-half game ahead of the Nets... Boozer tied his career high with five steals... Nets' forward Reggie Evans had 10 rebounds without scoring following his 11 rebounds and zero points against Dallas Friday... the Bulls signed veteran forward Lou Amundson to a 10-day contract Friday to fill the roster spot of injured forward Taj Gibson, who could be out for another two weeks with a sprained MCL.

QUOTABLE IV: "It didn't look like it tonight.''
-- Amundson, after teammate Kirk Hinrich told him "We need you'' in the Bulls' locker room following the game.

UP NEXT: For the Bulls, @ Indiana Sunday, @ San Antonio Wednesday, vs. Utah Friday. For the Nets, @ Charlotte Wednesday, vs. Washington Friday, @ Atlanta Saturday.