clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Bulls 94, Raptors 82: John Lucas, Kyle Korver lead 3rd quarter surge to help Toronto lose

For most of this game, it was as listless as you'd expect it to be, considering it was an early start facing the tanking Raptors without Derrick Rose. Even Stacey King's catchphrases (they're at about 1.5 per minute) didn't have the same punch. He did manage to try and compensate for Neil Funk's complete disdain for all of Toronto's players, by going too far the other way in praising them. Neil's a turd, but in this game he may have had a point: I know Thibs likes to say they're all NBA teams, but yeesh.

All that said, the Raptors found themselves with a 12 point lead in the second half, thanks to the Bulls carelessness (14 TOs...Neil called it 'toying with them') and a lot of the Raps' midrange jumpers falling. You could also sense the Bulls themselves were lulled into the proceedings as much as the fandom. Carlos Boozer and Luol Deng started the game out pretty well, but the starters then looked awful as the halftime deficit grew.

But then John Lucas had yet another great stint (13 points overall), and he and Kyle Korver (10) sparked a lineup alongside Deng/Taj/Asik to a 20-0 run and a 32-13 fourth quarter which literally turned the deficit around. It was shocking and quick, completely justifying any time someone's used the word 'energy' to describe something they didn't know how to quantify: things just looked different for Toronto when the Bulls started to turn it on. When they weren't turning it over, the shots they got were the ones the Bulls forced them into. They couldn't close space on any of the Bulls 3-point shooters (7-16 overall from beyond the arc), and their rebounding faults really started to hurt them. As soon as it looked to be 'just one of those nights' for the Bulls, their deep, deep bench pulled out yet another victory.

It was also good to see our old pal James "Jimmy Johns" Johnson play decently. Even Aaron Gray had some nice moments. Not so nice was seeing Deng drag around his left arm for 43 minutes. I don't know if it's his naturally awkward play, or the giant bandage on it, or just knowing that it's hurt that maybe makes it look worse than it is...but it doesn't look good. Luckily there's 2 off days between now and the next one, and that's a home date against this same team.