for this game

Thomas, Gray buoy Bulls past Raptors

Apr 17, 2008 - 4:03 AM CHICAGO (Ticker) -- Tyrus Thomas recorded a season-high 26 points and Aaron Gray added career-highs with 19 points and 22 rebounds to propel the Chicago Bulls to a 107-97 victory over the Toronto Raptors on Wednesday in the season finale for both teams.

The fourth overall pick in the 2006 draft, Thomas shot 9-of-13 from the field and 8-of-10 from the line for Chicago, which won three of its last four to end the season.

The victory, however, may very well be the last for interim coach Jim Boylan, who is expected to meet with general manager John Paxson on Thursday.

"I had fun doing it, sitting in the head coach's seat was a challenge," Boylan said. "Some of the experience was good and some wasn't, (but) I do love the challenge so I hope to be here a long time."

T.J. Ford finished with a team-high 18 points in 18 minutes for Toronto, which earned the sixth seed in the playoffs and will face the third-seeded Orlando Magic in the first round.

"Guys played hard and we wanted to finish with a win but we didn't," Ford said. "I wanted to get in a mindset to (get) ready for the playoffs and I did that."

"The main thing is that nobody got hurt," Raptors coach Sam Mitchell said. "We did want to win the game and the guys played that way. Everyone played hard to be ready for the playoffs."

Kris Humphries had 14 points and Andrea Bargnani came off the bench to score 13 points.

Gray entered the starting lineup in place of Joakim Noah, who was removed from the starting lineup after he was late to the game after returning from a funeral.

Upon leaving the contest, Gray was given a pronounced ovation from the crowd at the United Center.

"It was nice to come out at the end and get a big ovation, it's nice to feel wanted in this city," Gray said.

Entering the fourth quarter with a 76-75 lead, the Bulls pushed their advantage to double-digits at 92-81 on Thabo Sefolosha's two free throws with 6:02 remaining. The reserves on both teams then played out the rest of the game.

  • NBA
    TORONTO 97

    Apr 16 10:50 PM

  • NBA
    TORONTO 75

    Apr 16 10:12 PM

  • NBA
    TORONTO 54

    Apr 16 9:35 PM

  • NBA
    TORONTO 33

    Apr 16 9:03 PM