DeMar DeRozan's 42 point help Toronto Raptors solve Chicago Bulls in OT

By Larry Millson, The Sports Xchange  |  March 22, 2017 at 7:07 AM
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TORONTO -- The Toronto Raptors showed fight in more than one way Tuesday night.

They fought back from 15 points down in the fourth quarter and won 122-120 in overtime over the Chicago Bulls, led by 42 points from DeMar DeRozan -- one shy of his career best.

In gaining their third straight win, they fought off the hold the Bulls have had on them in recent seasons, ending an 11-game losing streak against them.

Raptors forward Serge Ibaka showed another kind of fight when he was involved in a skirmish with Bulls center Robin Lopez near the basket after Jimmy Butler's 3-pointer gave Chicago a 16-point lead with 3:59 to play in the third quarter.

"It felt great, in the fact that win, lose or draw, I felt we were scrapping, competing and that's all you can ask for from your team at this time of year," Raptors coach Dwane Casey said.

Ibaka and Lopez were ejected for fighting. Ibaka had 16 points and Lopez finished with 12.

"I think it was just a really physical game for everybody, it just kind of hit a flashpoint," Lopez said.

"What happened is that he was playing physical basketball and he got frustrated," Ibaka said. "We started to push each other like always happens when there's contact and then he threw the punch. Like man I'm just going to defend myself."

Cory Joseph added 19 points for the Raptors (42-29), who won three in a row. P.J. Tucker added eight points and 12 rebounds.

Jimmy Butler had 37 points and 10 rebounds to lead Chicago (33-38). Rajon Rondo added 24 points for the Bulls and Paul Zipser scored 12.

"The biggest thing is we didn't handle their pressure well," Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg said. "They got into us, they turned us over, just a couple of mindless ones that got them easy baskets, got them back into the game got their confidence (up) and got them momentum. I thought we did miss some good looks, we had three or four open shots and missed a couple of layups down the stretch and in overtime."

He deferred comment on the altercation until he sees the video.

The Bulls stretched a five-point halftime lead to a 15-point advantage after three quarters.

The Raptors cut the lead to four on two free throws by Joseph with 3:27 to play in the fourth quarter. A layup by Fred VanVleet reduced the lead to two points.

After a Chicago miss, Toronto tied it on a layup by Joseph with 1:50 remaining. Butler responded with a jump shot and a layup to give the Bulls a four-point lead with 1:12 left.

DeRozan's jumper cut the lead to two. He then tied the score on a layup with 37.3 seconds to play but missed the free throw. After both teams missed shots, the game went to overtime tied at 113.

DeRozan hit a turnaround jumper with 1:23 to play in overtime to give Toronto a 117-115 lead. Patrick Patterson's layup put Toronto ahead by four with 44.7 seconds left in overtime. DeRozan hit one of two free throws with nine seconds left for a five-point lead.

"It was one of those fun games," DeRozan said. "It sucks because of the altercation, we will probably lose Serge (Ibaka) for a couple of games, but that's eighties basketball, I guess."

Butler's 3-pointer with 2.8 seconds left in overtime to cut Toronto's lead to two.

The Bulls led 31-27 after the first quarter and 59-54 after the first half.

After Butler's 3-pointer gave the Bulls a 16-point lead, Ibaka and Lopez became involved in a skirmish.

"It seemed like I had three guys on me, I was being pulled back," Lopez said. "It felt like nobody had any hold on him and he just kept coming at me with his arm. I was just trying to get him off me."

He said the punch Ibaka threw only grazed him.

The third quarter ended with the Bulls leading 94-79.

"I felt that we played some of our best basketball of the season to build that lead," Hoiberg said. "Guys were playing together, the pace was phenomenal, especially early in the game. The game just got a little ugly."

NOTES:

-- A moment of silence was observed before the game Tuesday in memory of longtime Chicago Bulls executive Jerry Krause, 77, earlier in the day. He was the architect of six Bulls' championships during his 18-year tenure (1985-2003). The Bulls wore a black strip on their uniforms.

-- The Raptors wore their blue Toronto Huskies uniforms, honoring the team that played in the first season of the NBA (1946-47).

-- The Raptors play their next game Thursday when they visit the Miami Heat at American Airlines Arena.

-- The Bulls return home to the United Center on Wednesday where they play the Detroit Pistons.

-- Chicago F/C Cristiano Felicio was injured beneath the basket with 7:24 to play in the fourth quarter and needed to be helped to the bench with what was termed a tailbone injury.

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