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updated: 2/25/2014 10:53 PM

Bulls want win, get win over Hawks

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  • Bulls center Joakim Noah pulls down a rebound in the second half Tuesday night. Noah finished with 20 points and 12 rebounds in the Bulls' victory.

      Bulls center Joakim Noah pulls down a rebound in the second half Tuesday night. Noah finished with 20 points and 12 rebounds in the Bulls' victory.
    Associated Press

 
 

Mike Dunleavy, welcome to the club.

Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau has a history of going heavy minutes with wing players such as Jimmy Butler and Luol Deng. Butler missed his second straight game with a bruised rib Tuesday night in Atlanta, so someone needed to fill the gap in the lineup.

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Dunleavy didn't play all 48 minutes. He actually got nine seconds of rest, giving him an official playing time of 47 minutes, 51 seconds.

Dunleavy also scored a team-high 22 points as the Bulls held on to defeat the Hawks 107-103 at Philips Arena.

"I appreciate Thibs giving me that nine-second breather at the end of the half," Dunleavy joked to reporters after the game. "That made a big difference."

The Bulls (30-26) trailed by 14 points in the first quarter, led by 7 in the fourth quarter, watched Atlanta drain 14 shots from 3-point range (out of 33 attempts) and did just enough good things down the stretch to secure a win.

"I think they really wanted that game today," Joakim Noah said of the Hawks. "We really wanted that game, too. It wasn't pretty at times. I'm just happy we were able to come out with the win."

The Hawks (26-30) took the lead twice in the final two minutes, the second time when DeMarre Carroll's 3-pointer put the home team ahead 103-101 with 1:06 left.

On the Bulls' next trip, they struggled to get a good look. With the shot clock about to expire, Noah fired a pass out to Kirk Hinrich, who wisely saw Carroll flying at him. Hinrich went up for the shot, double-pumped and got hammered.

Hawks coach Mike Budenholzer went bonkers on the sideline, but it was tough to tell what sort of argument he could make. Hinrich drained all 3 free throws with 40.8 seconds left to put the Bulls ahead 104-103.

On the other end, Mike Scott missed a 3-pointer and the rebound was tapped back outside to Atlanta. Just before Scott got another open look and drained a 3-pointer, Budenholzer sprinted across midcourt and actually bumped into the referee to call a timeout.

After the break, Jeff Teague (26 points) tried to back into the lane against Hinrich. As Teague scanned the floor for a 3-point shooter, Hinrich reached in and knocked the ball into the arms of Noah.

The Hawks got another chance to take the lead when Dunleavy's inbounds pass was stolen with 18 seconds on the clock.

This time Teague drove toward the hoop, guarded by Tony Snell, and tried to circle along the baseline but stepped out of bounds just before he tossed a pass to an open Kyle Korver.

Atlanta was forced to foul, and Hinrich hit both free throws with 11 seconds left to make it 106-103. Needing a 3-pointer to tie, Scott had the ball poked away by Noah as he was going up for the shot. Again the Hawks screamed for a foul, but none was called.

Hinrich added another free throw to make it a 4-point game with 4.7 seconds left.

"They put us in a hole. We fought out of it," Dunleavy said. "We just had to battle the whole game."

The Bulls put seven players in double figures. Noah (20 points, 12 rebounds) and Carlos Boozer (17 points, 11 rebounds) collected double-doubles. Hinrich and Taj Gibson scored 14 each.

D.J. Augustin, after going 0-for-10 from the field in Miami on Sunday, shot 2-for-14 against Atlanta but tossed in a half-court shot at the end of the third quarter.

Atlanta was missing forward Paul Millsap with a knee injury and has now lost nine of its last 10 games.

This is a tough week for the Bulls. They return home to host Golden State on Wednesday night, then visit Dallas on Friday. Coming out of the week with 2 wins would be a victory for the Bulls, and they need one more to get there.

mmcgraw@dailyherald.com

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