Bulls beat Knicks, 92-87

The Bulls Wednesday rallied down the stretch from trailing virtually all game for a 92-87 victory.

The Bulls got crucial late plays and scores from Lauri Markkanen and Kris Dunn to add an uphill victory.

Dunn had 17 points, five assists and five rebounds and the effective clinching two free throws. Markkanen had 12 points.

The Bulls won their ninth in their last 11 games to raise their record to 12-22. The Knicks fell to 17-17. Justin Holiday and Robin Lopez each had 11. Denzel Valentine had nine points and a tam high nine rebounds. Nikola Mirotic had just four points and added eight rebounds. Holiday had nine rebounds. Kristaps Porzingis had 23 for New York.

Former Bulls Joakim Noah and Doug McDermott were back in the United Center, though with Noah inactive again. McDermott got his first start since going to the Knicks. Though the early feature was the international big men, Porzingis and the Bulls Lauri Markkanen. Markkanen had a driving dunk score, but Porzingis was making his shots on the way to 11 first quarter points. The Bulls were lax in transition as the Knicks had 10 first quarter fast break points and took a 28-17 lead. The Knicks continued to be the aggressor, taking a 36-22 lead early in the second quarter. The Bulls with Paul Zipser’s second straight three moved within 36-27 as the Knicks hit a drought with straight misses. But the Bulls missed their chance by matching those empty possessions with quick jumpers and lack of movement before the Knicks responded with a 10-4 run for a 46-31 lead and Bulls timeout. The Bulls came out with a Markkanen three to change the pace and presence. The Bulls got the movement back in their offense, producing crisper shots from Markkanen and Valentine for a 15-2 run that put the Bulls back into the game. The Knicks held onto s 52-49 halftime lead behind 15 from Porzingis while Markkanen had 10 points and the Knicks went without a second quarter fast break and it was 18-6 Bulls in the last four minutes. The Bulls were six of 10 on threes in the second quarter and the Knicks zero for four.

The Knicks got their 10-point lead back early in the third quarter from Porzingis before Dunn’s own seven-point run with a jumper and a drive sandwiching a three as the Bulls got back within 63-60 halfway through the third. The Knicks pulled out to a 71-63 lead before a pair of opportunity scores from David Nwaba enabled the Bulls to go into the fourth quarter trailing just 73-71. Dunn had 11 points in the third quarter. The Bulls kept moving to the verge of taking the lead early in there fourth, but missed several opportunities as the Knicks finally moved ahead 83-80 with 6:55 left. Again the Bulls threatened to take the lead with a Holiday three to get within one. But then Lopez missed close in rolling to the rim and the Knicks edged ahead 86-83 with four minutes remaining. The Bulls tied it on a Holiday three and then after a succession of misses by both teams, Dunn threw ahead to Markkanen on a runout for an 88-86 Bulls lead with 39.2 seconds left. It was their first lead since midway in the first quarter. Dunn made two free throws with 7.8 seconds left for a 90-87 Bulls lead.