Chicago Bulls pound Pelicans 107-72 to end three-game skid
NEW ORLEANS, February 8
Anthony Davis stood in a hallway outside the Pelicans’ and Bulls’ locker rooms, wearing a gray sweatsuit and smiling as he engaged Chicago coach Tom Thibodeau in a good-natured postgame chat. After a hard, awkward fall on an alley-oop dunk had sidelined Davis with a sore right shoulder, the All-Star’s demeanor could be seen as an encouraging sign for New Orleans – and the NBA. The dangling, empty right sleeve of Davis’ sweatshirt – the result of his arm being tucked in a sling – was more worrisome.
Pau Gasol and Derrick Rose helped Bulls break open a close contest following Davis’ departure from the game, and the Bulls cruised to a 107-72 victory Saturday night.
Derrick Rose added 20 points for the Bulls, who went on a 40-11 run after Davis went out.
Pelicans coach Monty Williams said the extent of Davis’ injury may not be known until Sunday, when he was expected to be examined further. The Pelicans play at home on Monday and Wednesday nights before the All-Star break.
The dunk that drove Davis from the game was a two-handed jam of Tyreke Evans’ lob. Davis’ body swung like a pendulum as he held the rim, then the 6-foot-10, 240-pound forward fell horizontally as he lost his grip.
Davis stayed in the game briefly before taking himself out with the score tied at 35 and 4:16 left in the first half.
Tony Snell scored 19 points and Jimmy Butler 18 for Chicago. Evans had 15 points for New Orleans, while Alexis Ajinca scored 10.
With Davis in the locker room, Chicago closed the first half on a 13-4 run that included two 18-foot jumpers by Gasol, Rose’s 3 and Taj Gibson’s putback dunk that made it 48-39.
The Bulls then blew the game open by starting the third quarter on a 27-7 run that included 3s by Snell and Gasol. Butler’s dunk put Chicago ahead 75-46 with 3:56 left in the period.
The Pelicans never got as close as 20 after that and trailed by as many as 36 points in the fourth quarter – a considerable letdown on the heels of Friday night’s dramatic victory in Oklahoma City in which Davis capped a 41-point night with a game-winning 3 as time expired.
Mavericks surge late to overrun Blazers
DALLAS, February 8
Dirk Nowitzki gave Dallas a shot at a rare win over a Western Conference playoff contender by capping a late rally with a 3-pointer that forced overtime.
Chandler Parsons took over from there.
Nowitzki’s 25 points included a high-arching 3-pointer that wiped out the last of an 11-point deficit in the final 2 minutes, Parsons scored 10 of his 20 in the extra period and the Mavericks beat the Portland Trail Blazers 111-101 Saturday night.
Instead of losing for the 12th time in 14 games against teams currently in the West playoff picture, the Mavericks (35-18) pulled percentage points behind Portland (34-17) for fourth place.
Damian Lillard ended a shooting slump to finish with 26 points and LaMarcus Aldridge had 25, but the Blazers were outscored 22-2 in a stretch that included the fourth quarter and overtime to drop their seventh straight road game.
The Mavericks gave themselves a chance with 3-pointers from Devin Harris and Parsons just 12 seconds apart to pull within five with 1:43 to go in regulation. Harris then knocked the ball away from Lillard, took a pass from Monta Ellis and hit a layup.
After Lillard missed a long 3, Harris rebounded a missed 3-pointer from Ellis to set up Nowitzki’s tying shot to a huge roar from what was left of a crowd that started filtering out not long after Wesley Matthews opened the fourth quarter with a 3-pointer that put Portland up by 16.
The Mavericks scored the first nine points of overtime, starting with two free throws by Parsons after he was fouled getting an offensive rebound, one of nine overall. He pumped his fist after a fadeway jumper that put Dallas ahead by 10.