Deng, Noah Lead Bulls In 99-93 Win Over Magic
CHICAGO (AP) — Luol Deng scored 15 of his 23 points in the second half to lead the Chicago Bulls to a 99-93 win over Orlando on Tuesday night, the Magic’s first loss of the season.
Deng and Nate Robinson keyed a 15-2 second-half burst when Chicago turned a five-point deficit into an eight-point lead. Robinson hit two straight jumpers to put Chicago ahead 74-70 early in the fourth, the Bulls’ first lead since midway through the third period.
Joakim Noah had 20 points, nine rebounds and five blocks for Chicago, while Robinson added 11 points and six assists off the bench. Robinson’s layup with 2:35 to play put Chicago up 91-81, its biggest lead of the game.
Arron Afflalo led the Magic with 28 points, 19 in the second half. E’Twaun Moore added a career-high 17 points.
Glen Davis, who entered the game fourth in the NBA with 25.5 points per game, scored 16 points but shot just 7 of 22 from the floor and fouled out.
Nicola Vucevic had 16 points and 10 rebounds for the Magic, who had won three of their last four in Chicago entering the game.
Orlando had started the season 2-0, surprising many around the league after trading star center Dwight Howard to the Los Angeles Lakers over the summer.
The Magic led 70-65 when the Bulls started their decisive run late in the third quarter. Deng tied the game with a jumper with 10:58 to play. Later, Robinson capped the run with a layup in transition.
Orlando trimmed the lead to four on Affalo’s 3 late in the final minute, but Chicago held on down the stretch. Taj Gibson’s dunk and free throw with 39 seconds remaining iced it for the Bulls.
The Magic pushed the lead to seven in the second quarter behind seven points from Moore before Richard Hamilton closed the lead to 48-45 with a pull-up jumper in transition to close the first half.
Orlando went 4 for 6 from 3-point range in the opening half.
Chicago closed the gap to two by the end of the third quarter, getting seven points from Deng in the period. Afflalo scored nine points to help Orlando maintain the lead, including three free throws after being foul by Kirk Hinrich behind the arc.
Deng scored eight quick points to give the Bulls an early lead to start the game, but Orlando closed the first quarter with an 11-2 run and was up 24-23 at the end of the period.
J.J. Redick continued his hot shooting early with a 3-pointer and a midrange jumper during the spree. Redick hit 16 of 25 shots in Orlando’s first two games.
After making his first two shots, Redick hit just one of the next seven before hitting a 3-pointer in the fourth quarter. He handed out a game-high seven assists.
NOTES: Orlando point guard Jameer Nelson missed his second straight game because of a strained right hamstring and groin. He’s day to day. . While the game was announced as a sellout, there were many more empty seats than usual at the United Center. Beside the elections and the absence of Bulls star Derrick Rose, the weather was cold and drizzly in Chicago. . Bulls Hall of Famer Scottie Pippen sat courtside with his wife during the game after playing basketball with President Obama earlier in the day. . Despite the loss, Orlando was 8 for 19 from 3-point range. The Magic entered the game with a 53.8 percent mark behind the arc.
(© 2012 by STATS LLC and Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited.)