Robinson takes off late to spark Bulls in triple-overtime win
Chicago Bulls' Nate Robinson (2) celebrates a basket against the Brooklyn Nets during the second overtime in Game 4 of their first-round NBA basketball playoff series Saturday, April 27, 2013, in Chicago. The Bulls won 142-134 in three overtimes. (AP Photo/Jim Prisching)
Nate Robinson scored 34 points, and the Chicago Bulls wiped out a 14-point deficit late in regulation and beat the Brooklyn Nets, 142-134, in triple overtime yesterday to take a 3-1 lead in the first-round playoff series.
The Bulls were trailing 109-95 with less than 4 minutes to go in the fourth quarter when Robinson put the Bulls on his back and carried them to the wild victory.
He scored all but five of his points after the third quarter, including the first 12 in a 14-0 run that wiped out the deficit. Then, with two seconds left in the first overtime, he banked in a go-ahead jumper over Deron Williams.
Joe Johnson answered with one of his own to send it into a second overtime, tied at 121. The Bulls had a chance to win in the closing seconds of the next extra session, but Joakim Noah was blocked, and the game went to a third overtime.
The Bulls finally pulled away after Williams (32 points) drove for a layup to pull Brooklyn to 133-130 – the only points for him after regulation – with 3 minutes left.
Luol Deng answered with a basket to make it a five-point game, and Nazr Mohammed came up with two baskets in the final 32 seconds to help preserve the win.
He scored on a jump hook, then grabbed the rebound and scored with 19 seconds left after Carlos Boozer made a free throw and missed the second, making it 140-134.
The Bulls will try to wrap up the best-of-seven series at Brooklyn on Monday. The Nets are going to have to dig deep to win three in a row after they wasted a prime chance to draw even with Chicago and steal back home-court advantage.
After Robinson scored 12 straight at the end of regulation, Boozer capped that tying run with a layup with about 55 seconds left.
Brook Lopez then hit two free throws, but the Bulls tied it again when Noah put back his own miss with 23 seconds left. Williams then missed a jumper and Wallace had his layup blocked by Jimmy Butler with a second left, sending the game into overtime.
It looked as if the Bulls would win when Robinson banked in a runner off one foot over Williams with two seconds left in OT. But after a 20-second timeout, Johnson caught a pass at the top of the key and nailed a floater at the buzzer, sending it into double overtime.
The Bulls were leading 127-123 after Deng fed Noah for a dunk with 1:18 left in the second overtime, but Johnson quickly quieted the crowd with a three-point play.
Robinson then fouled out when he charged into Williams with just over a minute left. Lopez got fouled with 48.7 seconds left and made the first free throw to tie it at 127 before missing the second. Boozer got the rebound, but Luol Deng missed a jumper with 30 seconds left.
Johnson then missed one for Brooklyn with about six seconds left. Noah was blocked by Lopez, the ball bouncing out of bounds, and the game went to a third overtime after the inbounds pass deflected off the Bulls center and hit the rim.
GRIZZLIES 104, CLIPPERS 83
Marc Gasol had 24 points and 13 rebounds, and Memphis beat Los Angeles to even the first-round playoff series at 2-all.
Zach Randolph finished with 24 points and nine rebounds as the Grizzlies won their second straight to ensure another stop in Memphis for Game 6. Mike Conley had 15 points and 13 assists, and Tayshaun Prince scored 15 in his best game of the series.
Chris Paul and Blake Griffin had 19 points apiece for the Clippers, and Griffin also grabbed 10 rebounds. Los Angeles’ reserves outscored its counterparts again, 43-16. But DeAndre Jordan was the only other starter to score for Los Angeles, and he had two points. Chauncey Billups and Caron Butler went a combined 0 for 10 from the floor in being shut out.
Game 5 is Tuesday night in Los Angeles.
HAWKS 90, PACERS 69
Al Horford had 26 points and 16 rebounds as Atlanta turned things around dramatically in its playoff series against Indiana, blowing out the Pacers in Game 3.
Playing with much more urgency than they did in two double-digit losses at Indianapolis, the Hawks raced to a 54-30 halftime lead and narrowed the best-of-seven series to 2-1. Game 4 is tomorrow night in Atlanta, where the Hawks have won 12 straight over the Pacers dating to 2006.
The Hawks changed up their lineup – inserting 7-footer Johan Petro at center and bringing 3-point specialist Kyle Korver off the bench – after getting manhandled on the road. With more favorable matchups and a lot more energy, Atlanta suddenly made a series of it.
Indiana, which looked so dominant on its home court, was a totally different team after heading south. David West led the Pacers with 18 points. Paul George, who averaged 25 points in the first two games, was held to 16 on 4-of-11 shooting. The Pacers connected on a dismal 27 percent (22 of 81) from the field.