INDIANAPOLIS -- Derrick Rose might finish games better than anyone in the league, but the Bulls made a good demonstration of how to finish strong as a team Thursday night in Game 3.
Rose actually was 0-for-8 from the field in the second half before his game-winning layup with 17.8 seconds remaining. The Bulls wouldn't have been in position to pull out a victory if not for Luol Deng scoring 21 points, Kyle Korver scoring 10 points in the fourth quarter and then the defense getting three stops in the final minute.
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Korver's flurry was vital. The Bulls trailed 70-65 early in the fourth quarter before Korver knocked down a bank shot, then a 3-pointer that capped a 10-0 run.
His second 3-pointer of the quarter put the Bulls ahead 78-74 with 6:01 remaining. Korver is an amazing 7-for-8 from long range in this series.
"I work on that fast-break (3-pointer) every day and I haven't gotten one in a long time, so I was pretty excited to shoot that one," Korver said. "They're really zeroing in on Derrick, trapping him early, trapping him in the backcourt. We've got to be able to spread the floor a little bit."
Pacers coach Frank Vogel didn't ignore Korver's contribution.
"Korver killed us in the fourth," Vogel said. "He even killed us on the last play when we couldn't leave him to help, so that allowed Rose to get to the bucket."
Before Rose's game-winner, Indiana got two chances to take the lead, but Danny Granger missed a jumper, then after an offensive rebound, Darren Collison missed a 15-foot runner.
On the Pacers' final possession, the Bulls did a nice job of double-teaming Granger (21 points). He forced a 3-pointer from the top of the key that was both wide and short.
"I knew the play was going to Granger and they were going to want him to go to his right hand," Deng said. "I told Taj, 'He's not going to want to give the ball up. So when he comes off the pick, let's trap him and get it out of his hands and make someone else beat us.' Taj was great. Taj has quick feet and we always use that."
Bulls center Joakim Noah, who finished with 11 points and 10 rebounds, wanted reporters to take note of the final defensive stop.
"It shows you it's not all about stats," Noah said. "A lot of people are always looking at the stat sheet. To me, what really affects winning is Taj Gibson's blitz on Granger late at the end of the game. Nobody's going to ever talk about that, but those are the things that win the game."