High-flying Bulls snap Knicks win streak
CHICAGO - Agence France-Presse
Chicago Bulls' Carlos Boozer (C) battles for a loose ball with New York Knicks' Carmelo Anthony (L) and Jason Kidd during the second half of their NBA basketball game in Chicago, Illinois April 11, 2013. REUTERS photoNate Robinson led the way with 35 points as the Chicago Bulls used a balanced attack to beat New York 118-111 in overtime late Thursday, snapping the Knicks' 13-game win streak.
Robinson also drained five three pointers for the Bulls who spoiled another superb scoring performance by Knicks star forward Carmelo Anthony.
A half dozen Bulls reached double figures in scoring, including Jimmy Butler and Carlos Boozer, who each recorded double-doubles with 22 points and 14 rebounds and 13 points and 15 boards respectively.
Luol Deng chipped in with 16 points for the Bulls who became the second team in league history to halt two 13-plus win streaks in the same season, joining the 1990-91 Phoenix Suns. On March 27, Chicago snapped the Miami Heat's dynamic 27-game winning streak.
Deng, who had missed the previous two games due to injury, also had eight rebounds, while Richard Hamilton and Kirk Hinrich had 14 and 11 points, respectively.
Anthony scored 36 points and extends his 36-point plus scoring streak to six games. The last player to achieve that was future Hall of Famer Kobe Bryant, of the Lakers, who had nine straight games of 36-plus in 2003.
J.R. Smith finished with 28 points and 14 rebounds, while Anthony grabbed a season-high 19 rebounds for the Knicks, who defeated Washington on Tuesday to clinch the Atlantic Division title for the first time since 1994.
New York was hoping for its longest winning streak since a 15-game run from March 1 to April 2, 1994.
The Knicks quickly opened up a big lead on a 23-6 run before the Bulls chipped their way back into the contest by closing the first quarter on a 17-7 run of its own to slash the deficit to 30-23.
The Knicks then led by five at halftime and got off to a strong start in the second half, extending their lead to 15 midway through the third quarter. Pablo Prigioni capped a 18-8 run with a driving layup to make it 77-62.
Anthony made a couple of clutch free throws in the last minute of the fourth to level the score at 105-105. Deng's potential game-winner then bounced off the rim.
Anthony got a clean look at the buzzer, but his shot hit the back of the rim to send the game into overtime.
The Bulls also completed a four-game sweep of the Knicks this season, and have now won 12 of the last 16 contests between the clubs.
Chicago is 23-17 at home this season and will begin a three-game road trip Friday against Toronto, Miami and Orlando.
The Knicks suffered their first loss since March 17 against the Los Angeles Clippers. They will also visit Cleveland on this brief road trip.