Bulls Playoff Central

Heat takes the best-of-seven series in six games

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    Bulls reach the 2006 NBA Playoffs

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    Shaq goes on the attack,
    Heat eliminate Bulls

    Game 6: Miami Heat 113, Bulls 96 | May 4, 2006

    Chicago got off to slow start and never recovered, falling 113-96 at home to Miami on Thursday. The backcourt duo of Kirk Hinrich and Ben Gordon provided the scoring punch once again, as Hinrich scored 23 and Gordon added 21. Andres Nocioni contributed 20 for the Bulls, who finished the season winning 12 of their last 14 games to make the playoffs.

  • Game Six: Scenes from the Court | Postgame Comments
  • Recap | Box Score |

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    Wade returns from injury,
    sparks Heat to win

    Game 5: Miami Heat 92, Bulls 78 | May 2, 2006

    After posting two straight wins, the Bulls stumbled in the fourth quarter and lost 92-78 in Miami on Tuesday. Andres Nocioni had the hot hand for Chicago, scoring 23 points and pulling down 10 rebounds. Chicago clawed within 77-73 on two free throws by Michael Sweetney with 4:47 left in the game, but Gary Payton answered with a floater and Dwyane Wade drilled just his 14th 3-pointer of the season - and first of the series - to restore a nine-point lead.

  • Game Five: Postgame Comments | Recap | Box Score |

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    Bulls win again, even the series

    Game 4: Bulls 93, Miami Heat 87 | April 30, 2006

    Kirk Hinrich's long 3-pointer with 1:09 remaining turned out to be the game's biggest shot as the Bulls held on for a 93-87 home win in Game 4 on Sunday. After Hinrich's trey gave Chicago a five-point lead, Chris Duhon made two free throws with 26.3 seconds left and Andres Nocioni added two more from the line eight seconds later. Nocioni scored a game-high 24 points, Ben Gordon added 23 and Hinrich finished with 21 and nine assists. Tyson Chandler had to be carried off the court late in the fourth quarter after sustaining a right ankle sprain.

  • Game Four: Scenes from the Court | Postgame Comments
  • Recap | Box Score |

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    Bulls storm back, protect home court

    Game 3: Bulls 109, Miami Heat 90 | April 27, 2006

    It was a game Chicago had to have, and the Bulls controlled the Heat from the opening tipoff in Wednesday's 109-90 home win in Game 3. Ben Gordon scored 10 of his 24 points in the first quarter as the Bulls built an eight-point lead and didn't look back. Kirk Hinrich added 22 points and 11 assists, while Andres Nocioni and Luol Deng chipped in 19 points apiece. Chicago is now 8-0 all-time against Miami at home during the playoffs.

  • Game Three: Scenes from the Court | Postgame Comments
  • Recap | Box Score |

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    Bulls comeback comes up short

    Game 2: Miami Heat 115, Bulls 108 | April 24, 2006

    Chicago cut a 20-point deficit to just four in the final quarter but got no closer in a 115-108 loss in Miami on Monday. Andres Nocioni poured in a career-high 30 points on 13-for-15 shooting and Kirk Hinrich scored 17 of his 29 in the fourth period. Chicago, which led the NBA in field-goal percentage defense for the second straight season, allowed Miami to shoot 52 percent (44-of-84) and committed 18 turnovers.

  • Game Two: Postgame Comments | Recap | Box Score |

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  • Haslem Suspended for Game Two

    Bulls give Heat all they can handle
    in opener, but come up short

    Game 1: Miami Heat 111, Bulls 106 | April 22, 2006

    The Bulls erased a 14-point deficit and briefly held the lead before coming up just short in a 111-106 loss at Miami on Saturday. Ben Gordon fueled the comeback, scoring 20 of his game-high 35 points in the second half. Kirk Hinrich had 15 of his 19 points after the break, while Andres Nocioni tallied 18 points and 16 rebounds. "I felt like we should have stole that game. We were right there," Hinrich said. "I think everyone out there played really hard. We just didn’t have enough in the end and made a couple of mistakes.”

  • Game One: Postgame Comments | Recap | Box Score |

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    Chicago vs. Miami | Regular Season Meetings

    Game Eighty | Bulls 117, Heat 93 | April 16

    Bulls Clinch Postseason Birth with Win Over Heat

    Chicago trailed by double figures in the first period but used a big second-quarter run to overcome Miami in a 117-93 win on April 16. The victory gave the Bulls (39-41) their second straight postseason berth. Luol Deng scored 26 points on his 21st birthday, while Ben Gordon and Andres Nocioni added 18 apiece.

    Postgame Comments | Recap | Box Score |

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    Game Sixty Six | Heat 85, Bulls 84 | March 18

    Heat Use Free Throw Edge to Top Bulls

    Chicago had a few chances to grab the lead but came up empty down the stretch in a 85-84 home loss to Miami on March 18. Luol Deng (19 points, 10 rebounds) and Andres Nocioni (14 and 12) tallied double-doubles for the Bulls (29-37).

    Scenes from the Court | Postgame Comments
    Recap | Box Score |

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    Game Twenty | Heat 100, Bulls 97 | Dec. 13

    Riley Wins First Game Back as Heat Coach

    Kirk Hinrich poured in 15 fourth-quarter points, but the Bulls couldn't catch the visiting Heat in a 100-97 loss on Dec. 13. Hinrich scored a team-high 26 and added eight assists and five rebounds. Chicago (10-10) nearly overcame a 12-point deficit, but Luol Deng's 3-point attempt at the buzzer didn't fall.

    Scenes from the Court | Postgame Comments
    Recap | Box Score |

    Video Highlights

  • Bulls vs. Heat Schedule

    Chicago Tribune:
    A non-fan's ode to the Bulls
    "These Bulls keep coming," writes Julia Keller. "Just ask the Heat players, who have been forced to grab, nab and leave scabs as they try to catch them. It's like watching Goliath get mad and whine to anybody who'll listen that David's slingshot has an illegally oversize stone. And it reminds me why I loved the NBA."

    Playoff Note-a-Bulls

  • This season marks the 27th appearance by the Bulls in the NBA Playoffs, and their second consecutive. The Bulls have won the title six
    times (1991, 1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 1998), the third most by a single franchise.

  • As a franchise, the Bulls have appeared in 259 playoff games and hold an all-time playoff record of 149-110 (.575).
  • The Bulls roster features 12 (out of 15) players with previous playoff experience totaling 123 games (Allen, 10; Chandler, 6; Duhon, 6;
    Gordon, 6; Harrington, 25; Hinrich, 6; Livingston, 17; Nocioni, 6; Pargo, 16; Piatkowski, 9; Songaila, 12 and Sweetney, 4).

  • Playoff "Central"

    With its 117-93 win at Miami on April 16, Chicago clinched its second consecutive playoff berth. The win also guaranteed post-season action for all five teams in the Central Division (Detroit, Cleveland, Milwaukee, Indiana and Chicago), marking the first time in 20 seasons that one Division has had every team qualify for the playoffs.

    The last time was during the 1985.86 season when the Midwest Division had all six teams qualify (Houston, Denver, Dallas, Utah, Sacramento and San Antonio). Note: The NBA had only four divisions until breaking into six divisions for starting with the 2004.05 season.

    Defensive Minded

    Known last season for their stingy defense, Scott Skiles’ team again tightened the screws on its opponents this season. Chicago held its opponents to just .426 shooting, the best defensive field goal percentage in the NBA. The Bulls began the season less aggressive defensively, allowing the team’s defensive field goal percentage to swell to as much as .443 through the first 24 games.

    In 2004.05, the Bulls held opponents to a franchise record and League-best .422 field goal percentage. The last time a team led the NBA in lowest opponent field goal percentage in back- to-back seasons was San Antonio in 1997.98 and 1998.99.

    Winning Ways

    The Bulls returned to their winning ways down the stretch this season. On March 22, the Bulls dropped their fourth straight loss and fell 10 games below .500 at 29-39 overall.

    Chicago then closed the regular season with wins in 12 of its final 14 games, including a season high six-game winning streak to end the season, and secured a berth in the 2006 Playoffs. Chicago also posted an NBA-best 9-1 (.900) record during the month of April.