Knicks Beat Up on Tired Bulls 107-91


24. Final. 107. 27. 91

Saturday night the fresher New York Knicks took on a tired Chicago Bulls.

Both teams came off a game the previous night, except that New York came off a game where they cruised to 107-97 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers after leading the game by as many as 30 points, and Chicago came off a quadruple overtime loss against the Detroit Pistons. Quadruple Overtime! FOUR!

The Bulls then had to deal with the logistics of coming to New York from Chicago. There is no doubt that the Knicks had the fresher legs, with the Bulls not getting to their hotel until 4 A.M-ish in the wee morning.

The Bulls also had to play without Pau Gasol because the Spaniard did not make the trip to New York with Chicago choosing to rest their 35 year-old star forward after playing 48 minutes Friday night. The Bulls’ backcourt even eclipsed the 50 minutes of playing time… in the quadruple overtime loss. Jimmy Butler played 55 minutes and Derrick Rose playing 54 minutes.

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It looked like it was the Knicks that were coming off a quadruple overtime game though… as the Bulls jumped out to a double digit lead within three minutes of tip-off… Head coach Derek Fisher quickly called a timeout and New York really responded well, going on a 23-6 run to finish the first quarter!

Superstar Carmelo Anthony led the comeback for New York, scoring 13 of his game high 27 points in the opening period. Anthony was on fire, knocking down his last four attempts from the field in the first quarter.

After the Bulls’ hot start (5/8 FG), Chicago cooled off significantly, going only 2/13 from the field to end the first quarter on 33.3% shooting. New York led by as many as 15 points in the first half. Joakim Noah tried his best to keep the Bulls in the game, scoring a season high in points by halftime with 13 points. Noah collected his first double-double of the season, finishing the game with 21 points and 10 rebounds.

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The duo of Arron Afflalo and Anthony dominated the third quarter, combining to score 19 points in the period. New York led by as many 17 points but a 10-2 Bulls’ run to end the third quarter cut the Knicks’ lead to single digit; 77-68. Off the bench, rookie Bobby Portis led the run; scoring eights in the run, including back to back three-pointers to end the period. Portis also scored a season high and collected his first double-double of the season, finishing the game with 20 and 11 rebounds.

Just as fast as Chicago erased the large lead, New York immediately pushed the lead back up to 17 points just as fast. The Knicks’ bench came out strong and started the fourth quarter on a 8-0.

Aaron Brooks would lead a short-lived mini-run, but then Fisher inserted New York’s starters back into the game and the Knicks shut the doors on the Bulls, going on to win 107-91.

Butler and Rose really struggled Saturday night, coming off playing 50+ minutes against the Pistons. The backcourt duo combined for only 18 points on 7/21 shooting from the field. The duo normally scores twice as many  points, with a combined season average of 35.9 points per game. The Knicks got very fortunate to take on the duo fatigued.

Next: Report: The New York Knicks Could Look For Backcourt Help

New York will look to extend their winning streak to five games (would be the largest of the season) Monday night against the Orlando Magic. The Magic will be on the second game of a back to back, so hopefully New York can catch another break.