Robinson and the Bulls steal game 4 in a triple OT showdown
Nate Robinson and the comeback.
The Nets couldn’t get into a groove early, with four turnovers in the beginning minutes. The Chicago defense and crowd were giving it to Brooklyn early. Jimmy Butler had an electric and-one layup, putting the United Center fans on their feet. The Bulls were inspired by the hustle of Joakim Noah. Noah was playing with placer fasciitis in his foot, but so was Brooklyn shooting guard Joe Johnson. Brooklyn took their first lead of the game 9 minutes into the first quarter. Brook Lopez carried the offensive load for Brooklyn with 12 points, while Jimmy Butler both had 10 points at the end of the first. The Nets began to heat up toward the end of the quarter, taking a one point lead into the second, 26-25.
Chicago inched ahead in the opening seconds of the second, going on a quick 8-0 run sparked by Nate Robinson. The Bulls seemed like they had taken all the momentum after striking offensively. Brooklyn kept grinding away with Andray Blatche, who had 9 points coming off of the bench. The highlight of the second quarter was the scene that C.J Watson and Nate Robinson created. Robinson fouled Watson but he retaliated a shoved Nate into the scorer’s table. A double technical foul was given to the two players. The two teams continued to play an extremely physical game. Countless fouls, hard rebounds, and reckless defense defined the first half. The Bulls were playing with their hair on fire, Chicago extended their lead with a 12-2 run, but Brooklyn battled back and dwindled the Bulls lead down to 3. Chicago took a well deserved 58-55 lead into the halftime break.
Both teams were trading blows to begin the second half, absolutely no defense was evident to start the third quarter. The two point guards were playing with heart, Deron Williams and Kirk Hinrich. Throughout the whole series Hinrich has been frustrating Williams, but game 4 was a game that belonged to D-Will. Williams was scoring the ball with ease and driving the paint like an all-star. Reggie Evans played fantastic, taking the ball into the paint and drawing fouls. With time winding down in the third quarter, Williams, Lopez and Evans were keeping distance from the Bulls. Chicago’s defense was just a step slow in the third quarter, as the Nets were walking all over them offensively. With the clock winding down in the third quarter, Brook Lopez hit a fade away three. Brooklyn took a 84-76 lead into the fourth quarter.
With 12 minutes remaining, the Bulls needed a spark on offense. With Brook Lopez on the bench Brooklyn had nobody to turn to offensively. Brooklyn kept a comfortable lead over Chicago through out the last quarter. Chicago’s shot selection was obnoxiously bad in the fourth. The only person with hot hand for Chicago was Nate Robinson. Robinson scored 7 straight for the Bulls. The Bulls mentally checked out as Deron Williams and Brook Lopez closed this one out for the Nets. This game looked about over, when C.J Watson was on a fast break. The game took an unexpected turn, Watson missed the dunk and that gave Chicago a glimpse of hope. Nate Robinson provided all of the offense during the 12-0 run. Robinson had all 12 points during the comeback. Robinson provided the defense as well, creating a 5 second call which gave Chicago the ball on a possession in which they tied the game. Brook Lopez gave Brooklyn a 2 point after a pair of free throws. Luol Deng missed a go ahead three but Joakim Noah made the put back layup to tie it with 23 seconds left. Deron Williams missed a game winning jump shot as time expired. This game was headed to overtime.
Two very good overtime teams were about to bash heads. Joe Johnson and Gerald Wallace set the pace for the overtime early. Noah hit a big layup with two minutes remaining to bring it to within 2. Who other than Nate Robinson to hit a shot to tie it up. The Bulls forced Gerald Wallace out of bounds which gave Chicago a chance to take the lead. Carlos Boozer gave the Bulls a 2 point lead with 26 seconds left. Joe Johnson hit a floater with 11 seconds to tie the game up. Mr. clutch Nate Robinson hit the biggest shot of the game with 1.7 seconds left giving Chicago a 2 point lead. Joe Johnson answered with a buzzer beating floater to send the game into double OT.
5 extra minutes wasn’t enough to settle this blood bath. Joe Johnson and Joakim Noah started double OT with a pair of buckets. The Bulls were fighting foul trouble, Joakim and Boozer had 5 fouls. Chicago had a 2 point lead when Luol Deng found Joakim underneath the basket where he dunked it to give Chicago a 4 point lead with a minute and a half to go. Nate Robinson fouled out after he plowed Deron Williams over on a charge call. Brook Lopez tied the game up after he hit a free throw. Joe Johnson and Joakim Noah missed go ahead shots, so this game as sent to triple OT.
Joakim Noah flushed home a jump shot to get triple OT started, but the next possession he fouled out. Chicago was now with out the two me that got them to this point, Robinson and Noah. The Bulls were looking to pull away as they jumped to a 5 point lead with 3 minutes to go. Brooklyn was reeling offensively until Deron Williams hit a layup. Reggie Evans fouled out with a minute and a half left in the third overtime. With the Bulls up 5, Brook Lopez hit a pair of free throws to cut the Bulls lead to 3. Nazr Muhammed hit the biggest shot of season with 32 seconds left to put Chicago up 5. The light at the end of the tunnel was very close for the Bulls. Brook Lopez made a layup and then it was time to shoot free throws. Boozer went 1 of 2 from the line but Nazr Muhammed hit an even bigger shot as he converted a put back layup. With 18 seconds left the Nets were down by 6 and this marathon of a game seemed like it had crossed the finish line. Chicago set a franchise record, with an all time high 142 points in a playoff game. A game every Chicago fan will remember.
The Bulls won one of the most entertaining games of the season 142-134.