Chicago jumped to a 10-0 lead as Portland missed its first seven shots from the field.
The Blazers offense was listless, lacking the movement of players, the ball and were plagued by a general uncertainty that hovered over their play all night.
The two men got tangled up in the fourth quarter of what was a one-point game Tuesday.
“I was really pleased how we defended for (the last) 3 1/2 quarters”, Portland coach Terry Stotts said, “but we never really could gain any traction offensively”. Yeah, I’m going to get that. He missed last year’s game because of a sore left hamstring.
bulls-celebrate-early-with-win-over-blazers.jpgThe win over the Blazers marks the first time the Bulls have won in Portland since February 3, 2007.
“I’m willing to be that guy that makes them and I’m willing to be that guy that doesn’t make them”, he said.
Lillard finished two assists shy of a triple-double with 19 points, 10 rebounds and eight assists. Al-Farouq Aminu nearly corralled the miss, but lost the ball out of bounds to Chicago with just over two seconds left.
Rose’s driving layup pushed Chicago into a 78-65 advantage with 10 minutes to play, but Lillard led an 11-0 tear that trimmed the margin to 78-76 with 6:21 remaining.Gasol’s 15-footer gave the Bulls an 80-76 lead with 4:51 left, but McCollum buried a 3-pointer to cut the margin to 80-79.McCollum knocked down a pair of foul shots to tie the game at 82-82 with 4:01 to go.
This was indicative of the type of night it was; a physical and at times plodding game down the stretch in which the Bulls couldn’t get distance because the Blazers refused to give ground late. But Butler put a exclamation point on the first half when he pulled up about 5 feet behind the half-court line.
The 27-year-old Rose is averaging 13.6 points, six assists and three rebounds per game this season.
Damian Lillard missed a 3-pointer to tie it for Portland with 2:25 left, then missed the second of a pair of free throws with 20.7 seconds left that would have also pulled the Blazers into a tie.
Plumlee and Butler had to be separated after an altercation between them with 4:17 in the 4th quarter.
It was in the fourth quarter when Plumlee appeared to drop a shoulder into Butler, who was setting a screen. Things got testy with Butler and Mason Plumlee getting in to a scuffle, and the heated argument landed Plumlee a flagrant foul and Butler a technical.
“You know, he thought it was football for a second there, ” Butler said. Butler also had a huge impact on the game, leading the team with 22 points and solid defense throughout the game. “Not sure I’ve ever experienced four days between games on a trip”, said Hoiberg, who played 10 National Basketball Association seasons. “I’m going to ask him to pay me back”.
“I’m going to tell my agent [Happy Walters] to email him or something”, Butler said.