Thursday, February 28, 8:00 PM (EST) at United Center, Chicago, IL
THE FACTS: On a night when select fans received a T-shirt with his likeness on it, Bulls center Joakim Noah recorded his third career triple-double (23 points, 21 rebounds, 11 blocks) to lead the host Bulls to a 93-82 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers. The Bulls snapped a three-game home losing streak with the win, while the 76ers dropped their seventh straight game overall and ninth straight on the road. Carlos Boozer added 21 points and 12 rebounds for the Bulls. Jrue Holiday led the 76ers with 22 points, and Spencer Hawes had a double-double with 20 points and 15 rebounds.
THE FACTS II: The Bulls lost a third key contributor just before the game when starting shooting guard Rip Hamilton reported he was suffering from lower back spasms. Marco Belinelli started for him and scored six points in 27 minutes.
QUOTABLE I: "He's an energy-effort player. His will from the start of the game was incredible."
-- Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau talking about Joakim Noah.
THE STAT: The 76ers had one more basket than the Bulls, one more 3-pointer than the Bulls, but got beat at the free throw line, 26-12. The 76ers only made 57 percent of their free throws (12-for-21).
QUOTABLE II: "Our defense was good enough to win."
-- Philadelphia coach Doug Collins, noting the Bulls shot just 38.6 percent from the field.
THE STAT II: Noah's 11 blocks was a career high, topping his previous high of eight he got back in January of 2009. It also tied the Bulls' record for blocked shots in a regulation game (Artis Gilmore, Dec. 20, 1977).
TURNING POINT: The Bulls led the entire second half and had a lead of as much as 16 points, but the 76ers pulled within four points with 7:07 left in the game. Two baskets by Nate Robinson, one of them a 3-pointer, gave the Bulls a nine-point cushion and that was enough to stem the comeback attempt.
INJURY UPDATE: Hamilton is listed as day-to-day with his back spasms. Bulls forward Luol Deng took an elbow to the face from Spencer Hawes with 26 seconds left in the game but looked well enough in the locker room after the game.
HOT: Jrue Holiday was 10-for-19 from the field for the 76ers.
NOT: Bulls guard Nate Robinson, playing backup to starter Kirk Hinrich and occasionally with Hinrich Tuesday, was 3-for-11 from the field and had three turnovers in 20 minutes.
QUOTABLE III: "He has unique skills for someone his size. He's able to handle the ball and make plays. Definitely his motor is way up there."
-- Philadelphia center Spencer Hawes.
BAD MOVE: With his team down by seven with 1:19 left, Philadelphia coach Doug Collins did not have his team press the inbounds or foul the Bulls to regain possession.
ROOKIE WATCH: Philadelphia forward Arnett Moultrie had four points on a pair of baskets in 6 ½ minutes of play.
QUOTABLE IV: "Come on, Jo! I can't get to my locker to get dressed. I want a new locker!"
-- Bulls guard Nate Robinson, complaining about the crowd of reporters at Joakim Noah's locker waiting for Noah to do post-game interviews. Robinson's locker is right next to Noah's.
NOTABLE: The Bulls swept the season series against the 76ers 3-0... The Bulls finished the month of February 5-8, the first losing month in the two-plus seasons Tom Thibodeau has been coach... the Bulls are just 16-14 at home this season... Noah's triple-double was the first with at least 20 in two of the three categories since David Lee of the New York Knicks had 37 points, 20 rebounds and 10 assists on April 2, 2010... it was the first triple-double with at least 20 in two categories for the Bulls since the team's first triple-double by Guy Rodgers on Oct. 18, 1966 when he had 22 points, 21 assists and 10 rebounds.