99 - 82 Final
  for this game

Rose's 44 carry Bulls over Hawks in Game 3

May 7, 2011 - 3:00 AM
Atlanta, GA (Sports Network) - Derrick Rose provided most of Chicago's offense with a career-high 44 points to go with seven assists, carrying the Bulls over the Atlanta Hawks, 99-82, in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference semifinals.

Rose, who shot 39 percent from the floor and committed 11 turnovers over the first two games of the series, shot 16-of-27 on Friday and turned it over just twice to send the Bulls to a 2-1 series lead.

"I was just attacking the whole game. That was my whole process coming in, trying to get myself going and get my teammates going," Rose said.

Taj Gibson was a spark off the bench with 13 points and 11 rebounds -- seven on the offensive end -- while fellow reserve Kyle Korver provided 11 points for Chicago, which shot 10-of-20 from three-point range.

Conversely, the Hawks made just 1-of-6 from long distance, as sharpshooters Joe Johnson and Jamal Crawford were once again held in check for a combined 17 points.

Jeff Teague, starting in place of the injured Kirk Hinrich, led Atlanta with 21 points, while Josh Smith totaled 17 points, 13 boards and four blocks in defeat.

"They beat us up, completely beat us up," Hawks head coach Larry Drew said. "You have to play this team with an energy. You have to match their physicality ... You have to be ready to make it a war for 48 minutes."

Game 4 of the set will also be at Philips Arena on Sunday.

The top-seeded Bulls gave up 103 points in dropping the series opener, then turned on the defensive intensity to take the next two games. Specifically, they have put the clamps on the backcourt dup of Johnson and Crawford, who went for 56 points in Game 1, but have totaled just 44 over the last two.

"It's tough to beat us when we're playing good defense and tonight we did," Rose said.

And on offense, Chicago turned to the league MVP.

Al Horford's dunk brought the Hawks within, 86-75, with under 8 1/2 minutes to go in the game, but Rose answered with the next eight points, first draining a turnaround jumper, then pumping in two three-pointers to suddenly put Chicago ahead by 19.

Korver made another from behind the arc on the next possession, and both teams emptied their benches shortly thereafter with the outcome no longer in doubt.

Rose and Teague went toe-to-toe over the first 6 1/2 minutes of the game, with each point guard scoring 11 points in a variety of ways.

While Teague tapered off after his fast start, Rose continued to keep the Bulls in front, finishing the quarter with 17 points en route to a 29-23 lead after 12 minutes.

With Rose on the bench to start the second, Chicago's reserves kept the pressure on, as Gibson got inside for a pair of buckets and a 42-29 cushion five minutes in.

Korver and Luol Deng hit from long range on consecutive possessions a little later, and Rose pulled up for a jumper the next time down to extend the lead to 54-35.

The Hawks scored eight of the final 10 points of the half, but failed to cut their deficit to single digits in the third despite making 8-of-14 from the field during the quarter.

The main reason was Rose, who poured in another 13 points, including two on a tough runner in the lane in the final minute that helped Chicago take an 80-63 advantage into the fourth.

Game Notes

Rose's previous career-high was 42 points, done twice. He made 4-of-7 from three-point range and 8-of-9 from the foul line...Joakim Noah made up for a 1- for-8 shooting night with five blocks and 15 rebounds, helping Chicago own the glass by a 47-34 margin...Johnson, Horford and Marvin Williams each netted 10 points for the Hawks, who never led in the game...Bulls forward Carlos Boozer, who is dealing with a turf toe problem, had six points and six rebounds.

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