Sweetney’s Late Free Throws Lead Bulls
Chicago 85, Golden State 84
CHICAGO, Nov. 9 (Ticker) -- The Golden State Warriors' road trip ended in frustrating fashion.
After Michael Sweetney made the go-ahead free throws with 6.3 seconds remaining, Jason Richardson was denied on a drive to the basket as time expired, saddling the Warriors with an 85-84 loss to the Chicago Bulls.
Despite the struggles, the Warriors had a chance to win and went to the athletic Richardson in order to get it. The two-time Slam Dunk champion drove past the bigger Luol Deng before the 7-1 Tyson Chandler came over to help and knocked the ball away while making some contact.
"It was a good non-call," Chandler said. "I am just glad I am not on the other end of that. When a guard jumps into a big man who goes straight up to challenge a shot, he is impeding my space. That is a no-call and it should be that way every time."
Richardson and coach Mike Montgomery both were irate and yelled at officials as they left the court.
"I'm not even going explain that," Richardson said. "It's point-blank simple the team depends on me to get the ball in the basket, not to just draw a foul. Next time the ball has to be in the basket."
"What did I see? What did you see?" Montgomery said. "You want me to get fined? Then don't ask me that question."
Mike Dunleavy's 3-pointer with 11 seconds remaining had given the Warriors an 84-83 lead. Sweetney responded at the other end, drawing a foul from Troy Murphy.
"He (Sweetney) is a big boy so it is what it is," Murphy said. "They made the call so you have to live with it."
"The last play we run a lot in practice," Sweetney said. "We wanted to get that overtime monkey off our backs, so I went to the line knowing I was going to make those shots."
Baron Davis scored 17 points and Richardson and Derek Fisher added 15 each for the Warriors, who shot 34 percent (30-of-89) from the field. They shot just 24 percent (12-of-49) in the second half, when they let a 49-39 lead slip away.
"We didn't play very well but had a chance to win the game," Montgomery said. "Our guys played their (butts) off. All we had to do was make a play. We were right there though, back-to-back on the road."
Kirk Hinrich scored 23 points for Chicago, which continued its trend of playing close games. The Bulls have had two games decided by one point and the other two go to overtime.
It was tight throughout the entire fourth quarter, with the biggest lead three points. That came when Jannero Pargo and Sweetney opened the period with baskets to give the Bulls a 71-68 advantage. The lead changed hands five times in the last 1:43.
The Bulls used a 17-7 spurt to open the third quarter and get back into game. Darius Songaila capped the surge with two free throws, tying the game at 56-56.
After the Warriors rebuilt the lead to six points, the Bulls closed the period with a 6-1 surge to pull within 68-67.
Ben Gordon added 12 points for Chicago, which shot 46 percent (31-of-67), held a 45-42 rebounding advantage and won despite committing 26 turnovers.
"A bad win is better than a bad loss and that's exactly what that was," Bulls coach Scott Skiles said. "We struggled all night to get any life, we had breakdowns all over the place. Guys were just forgetting plays. It was hard to recognize my team for a while."
Chicago was without guard Chris Duhon, who missed the game with a bruised right knee. Eric Piatkowski started in his place and scored six points in 13 minutes.