Bulls stifle James, Heat

CHICAGO — Frustrated by a rough start, Derrick Rose apologized to his teammates at halftime. As makeups go, they'll take it.

Rose scored 28, Luol Deng contained LeBron James and the Bulls struck first in the Eastern Conference final, pulling away to beat the Heat 103-82 in Game 1 on Sunday night.

The Bulls, who swept the Heat during the regular season, went on a 10-0 run midway through the third quarter, and as the final minutes ticked off, fans chanted "Over-rated!"

Game 2 is Wednesday in Chicago.

Rose settled down after committing three of his four turnovers in the opening minutes, hitting three 3-pointers. The Bulls converted 10 of 21 in all.

As for his apology?

"It was on me," Rose said. "Careless turnovers. You can't do that against this team."

Deng had 21 points and put the clamps on James, who scored 15 on 5-for-15 shooting.

Former Gator Joakim Noah had 14 rebounds, and the Bulls had 19 offensive boards, outscoring Miami 31-8 on second-chance points.

"You play defense hard and the shot goes up and they get an offensive rebound, kick it out for a three or get a layup or a dunk," James said. "Those are demoralizing for a defensive team."

Chris Bosh had 30 for Miami.

Bulls 103, Heat 82

MIAMI (82): James 5-15 4-4 15, Bosh 12-18 6-6 30, Anthony 0-1 0-0 0, Bibby 2-4 0-0 4, Wade 7-17 4-4 18, Jones 1-2 1-1 4, Miller 0-0 0-0 0, Chalmers 4-7 0-0 9, Magloire 1-2 0-0 2, Haslem 0-1 0-0 0, House 0-1 0-0 0, Howard 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 32-68 15-15 82.

CHICAGO (103): Deng 7-15 3-3 21, Boozer 5-10 4-4 14, Noah 4-14 1-2 9, Rose 10-22 5-6 28, Bogans 1-4 0-0 3, Brewer 3-5 2-2 8, Gibson 4-8 1-1 9, Watson 1-4 0-0 3, Korver 1-3 0-0 3, Asik 2-2 1-2 5. Totals 38-87 17-20 103.

Miami 23 25 15 19— 82

Chicago 20 28 24 31— 103

3-Point GoalsMiami 3-8 (Jones 1-1, Chalmers 1-2, James 1-3, Bibby 0-1, Wade 0-1), Chicago 10-21 (Deng 4-6, Rose 3-7, Korver 1-2, Watson 1-2, Bogans 1-3, Brewer 0-1). Fouled OutNone. ReboundsMiami 36 (Bosh 9), Chicago 52 (Noah 14). AssistsMiami 11 (James 6), Chi. 23 (Rose 6). Total FoulsMiami 15, Chicago 13. TechnicalsChi. three second. A22,874.

Durant finds shot, Thunder advances

OKLAHOMA CITY — Coming off his worst performance in the playoffs, Kevin Durant couldn't get his shots to fall early Sunday. Then he caught a glimpse of his mother dancing during a timeout and the ball started going through the net.

Durant scored 39 for his best offensive outing of the series, Russell Westbrook had his first playoff triple double and the Thunder advanced to the Western Conference final with a 105-90 victory over the Grizzlies in Game 7.

"I knew she had those dance moves," Durant said. "She used to do it all the time when I was young. She was having fun. I was glad to see that."

Soon enough, he was having fun, and the Thunder will make the franchise's first appearance in the West final since losing in the NBA Finals in 1996 as the Seattle SuperSonics.

Game 1 against the Mavericks is Tuesday in Dallas.

Durant, the NBA scoring champion, followed his 11-point Game 6 with one of his best playoff performances.

After arena cameras caught Durant's mother pumping her fist and dancing at her courtside seat, Durant hit a jumper in the lane and his first 3-pointer from the right side during a 9-0 burst that gave Oklahoma City its first double-digit lead at 33-23.

"Durant is a special player, one of the best players in the NBA," said Memphis' Zach Randolph, who had 17 points and 10 rebounds. " … You see what he does night in and night out, and he's just relentless."

Westbrook, criticized in these playoffs for taking too many shots, was at his all-around best with 14 points, 14 assists and 10 rebounds. It was only the fifth triple double in a Game 7, according to information provided by Elias Sports Bureau.

Thunder 105, Grizzlies 90

MEMPHIS (90): Mayo 5-12 3-5 14, Randolph 6-15 5-6 17, Gasol 4-10 4-4 12, Conley 7-19 2-2 18, Allen 3-6 1-2 7, Battier 2-6 0-0 4, Arthur 2-6 0-0 5, Young 2-6 0-0 4, Vasquez 2-4 0-0 5, Powe 1-3 0-0 2, Haddadi 1-1 0-0 2, Smith 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 35-88 15-19 90.

OKLAHOMA CITY (105): Durant 13-25 9-9 39, Ibaka 1-4 0-0 2, Perkins 2-4 0-0 4, Westbrook 4-12 6-6 14, Sefolosha 2-5 0-0 4, Collison 3-4 2-2 8, Harden 6-10 1-4 17, Mohammed 3-4 0-0 6, Maynor 1-3 0-0 3, Cook 0-4 0-0 0, Ivey 1-1 0-0 3, Robinson 1-1 2-2 5. Totals 37-77 20-23 105.

Memphis 17 17 24 32— 90

Oklahoma City 21 21 30 33— 105

3-Point GoalsMemphis 5-15 (Conley 2-3, Arthur 1-1, Vasquez 1-2, Mayo 1-5, Allen 0-1, Battier 0-3), Oklahoma City 11-28 (Harden 4-8, Durant 4-9, Ivey 1-1, Robinson 1-1, Maynor 1-2, Sefolosha 0-3, Cook 0-4). Fouled OutNone. ReboundsMemphis 49 (Randolph 10), Oklahoma City 51 (Collison 12). AssistsMemphis 13 (Conley 6), Oklahoma City 25 (Westbrook 14). Total FoulsMemphis 20, Oklahoma City 19. TechnicalsGasol, Memphis Bench, Ibaka, Westbrook. A18,203.

Around the league: Suns president Rick Welts revealed he is gay in a story posted on the New York Times' website. Welts called sports "one of the last industries where the subject is off limits" and hopes to mentor other gay people who seek to pursue a career in sports.

Bulls stifle James, Heat 05/16/11 [Last modified: Monday, May 16, 2011 1:26am]

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