By: David Schuster
It was not exactly the formula they drew up beforehand but a win is a win as the Bulls defeated the Pacers 104-99. The Bulls did not have their first lead until 48 seconds remained when Kyle Korver hit a three point field goal. Korver definitely had his shooting eye as he was 4/4 from behind the arc.
The Bulls looked rather sluggish for most of the game and trailed by ten 98-88 with three and a half minutes to go. But from there they finished the contest on a 16-1 run to basically steal the victory.
Derrick Rose in a word was magnificent. He finished with a game high 39 points which included 19/21 from the free throw line. Rose repeatedly went down the lane and got clobbered and one time jumped up and had words with Jeff Foster on a particularly hard foul. For good measure, Rose added 6 rebounds and 6 assists and there’s no chance the Bulls would have won this game without Rose’s performance.
Joakim Noah chipped in with 10 points and 11 boards and Luol Deng had 18 points but the Bulls need to play better defense in game 2 or Indiana can sneak out of town with a win. Though discouraged by their late collapse, the Pacers can take solace that they outplayed the Bulls for the most part. Unfortunately for them NBA games are 48 minutes not 45.