Boozer's double-double helps Bulls defeat NetsJan 1, 2011 - 3:31 AM Chicago, IL (Sports Network) - Carlos Boozer led all scorers with 20 points and grabbed 15 rebounds, as the Chicago Bulls held on to defeat the New Jersey Nets, 90-81, at the United Center.
Luol Deng went for 19 points and eight boards, while Derrick Rose contributed 19 points and nine assists for Chicago, which has won three straight and 12 of its last 14 overall.
Brook Lopez netted 19 points and Travis Outlaw and Stephen Graham each ended with 16 for the Nets, who dropped a 114-93 decision at Oklahoma City on Wednesday and have lost four in a row.
"Brave effort by our team tonight," Nets coach Avery Johnson said. "Defensively we played much better. The game was physical. We really played hard against Boozer and those guys inside."
Deng scored nine points in the opening quarter to help the Bulls grab a slim 23-21 lead after 12 minutes.
Chicago was up by as many as 11, 39-28, approaching the midway point of the second after Ronnie Brewer knocked down a pair of free throws, but a 14-2 run by the Nets put the visitors in front 42-41 after Outlaw finished off the surge with a jumper with 2:23 before the half.
Each side exchanged the lead in the remaining minutes before Brewers' three- pointer gave the Bulls a 46-44 edge heading into the intermission.
The hosts maintained the lead throughout the third and Deng's two from the stripe late in the quarter gave his squad a 70-63 advantage heading into the fourth.
Derrick Favors' tip-in pulled the Nets to within two at 75-73 with just under seven minutes to play. However, Chicago got a three-point play from Boozer and two free throws by Rose to make it a seven-point game with 5:24 remaining.
New Jersey drew to within five on a few occasions, but couldn't get any closer, as the Bulls held on down the stretch.
"Our defense picked up," Boozer said. "We got stops in the last 5-6 minutes of the game. We did a good job executing on their zone defense."
Nets guard Jordan Farmar missed the game with a sore right knee...New Jersey took two of three meetings against the Bulls a year ago, but has lost six of the seven in Chicago...The Bulls improved to 13-3 at home this season, while New Jersey fell to 3-15 as the visitor.
- NEW JERSEY: 81
Dec 31 5:30 PM
- NEW JERSEY: 63
End of 3rd
Dec 31 4:54 PM
- NEW JERSEY: 44
Dec 31 4:10 PM
- NEW JERSEY: 21
End of 1st
Dec 31 3:37 PM
- NEW JERSEY: 0
1st Quarter - 15:00
Dec 31 3:12 PM
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