97 - 88 Final
  for this game

Bulls use strong second half to beat Hornets

Feb 13, 2011 - 6:35 AM New Orleans, LA (Sports Network) - Derrick Rose scored 13 of his 23 points in the final two quarters, as the Chicago Bulls used a strong second half to beat the Hornets, 97-88, at New Orleans Arena.

Carlos Boozer added 17 points for the Bulls, who outscored the Hornets by a 55-35 margin in the second half, shooting 64.5 percent. They had trailed by 11 at halftime but used the strong play to finish their road trip with a 3-2 mark.

"Third quarter we sort of fought our way back, got within striking distance," said Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau. "Then, our bench was very, very good. They were active, I thought the rebounding was excellent. And we finished the game strong."

Luol Deng netted 14 for the Bulls, while Kurt Thomas and Omer Asik both pulled down 11 rebounds.

Marcus Thornton scored a season-high 24 points off the bench to lead the Hornets, who were coming off Friday's victory in Orlando.

"They were just able to clamp down," said Hornets guard Jarrett Jack. "Force us into some late shot clock situations. They were able to take over the ballgame."

Chicago erased most of its halftime deficit by making 10 of its 16 field goal attempts and 7-of-8 free throws in the third quarter.

Rose's three-pointer halfway through the period ended an eight-point burst that brought the Bulls within 64-63, though Thornton countered with a long- range make to maintain the Hornets' lead.

New Orleans played in front for the rest of the quarter, but held only a 74-72 edge moving to the fourth. The rest of the Hornets' lead evaporated shortly into final quarter, when Chicago rattled off six consecutive points to grab a 78-76 advantage.

The game was close for the next few minutes, but New Orleans had big problems scoring down the stretch, allowing Chicago to take control and come away with the win.

The Bulls scored nine points during a four-minute span in which the Hornets didn't get a point. Taj Gibson's dunk capped the surge for an 89-80 lead with five minutes to play.

David West and Trevor Ariza followed with baskets, but New Orleans scored only one more point until the final minute. That allowed the Bulls to push their lead to double-digits, and they were up 97-85 after Boozer's layup with 51.4 seconds to play.

The Bulls held a 24-22 edge after the first quarter, but poor shooting in the second left them trailing at the break. Chicago made just 6-of-16 shots in the frame while the Hornets sank 10-of-19.

Four of Chicago's misses, as well as two turnovers, occurred in the final three-plus minutes, when New Orleans went on an 11-0 run. Chris Paul hit a three-pointer before Thornton drained two, and West's turnaround bucket gave the Hornets a 53-42 lead.

Game Notes

The Bulls have won five in a row against the Hornets...West had 17 points, while Paul finished with 15...New Orleans shot 41 percent and 26-for-39 at the foul line...Chicago made 51.5 percent of its shots...The Bulls held a 47-26 rebounding advantage.