Regular Season Series (Game 2 of 2)

Series starts 1/16

Game 1: Monday, January 16th
Game 2: Wednesday, February 8th

Bulls 110

(21-27, 11-14 away)

Nuggets 107

(26-25, 16-10 home)

Coverage: WGN

7:30 PM ET, February 8, 2006

Pepsi Center, Denver, CO

1 2 3 4 T
CHI 33 25 28 24110
DEN 20 29 22 36107

Top Performers

Chi: B. Gordon 30 Pts, 6 Reb, 2 Ast, 4 Stl

Den: C. Anthony 31 Pts, 7 Reb, 2 Ast, 1 Stl, 1 Blk

Songaila nets 21 off bench as Bulls hold off Nuggets

DENVER (AP) -- Ben Gordon scored at least 30 points for the third straight game -- and this time the Chicago Bulls won.

Gordon finished with 30 points and hit two key 3-pointers late in the fourth quarter Wednesday night to help the Bulls hold off the Denver Nuggets 110-107.

Gordon finished 7-of-12 from behind the arc. He had scored 35 and 39 points in the Bulls' previous two losses at Utah and Phoenix.

"Ben made shots," Chicago coach Scott Skiles said. "He got hot early, missed a couple and got it going again."

Nuggets coach George Karl summed up Gordon's recent play with one word before the game: "Scary."

The Bulls snapped a four-game losing streak that coincided with the start of their seven-game road trip through the West.

Darius Songaila came off the bench to add 21 points for the Bulls, who handed the Nuggets their sixth loss in seven games.

The Bulls, though, again nearly managed to waste Gordon's stellar effort. It took Tyson Chandler's massive stuff of Carmelo Anthony at the end of the game to seal the win.

Chicago controlled the game for three quarters, taking advantage of Denver's embarrassing turnovers, off-the-mark passing and poor defense to pad their lead to 20 points.

But Denver entered the fourth quarter looking like a completely different team.

"They were playing good 'D'. They were a lot more aggressive. They were trapping in the backcourt," Gordon said.

Carmelo Anthony scored 15 of his 31 points in the final period, despite playing with a bandaged left thumb he sprained in the first half.

"It feels really sore," he said. "I can't even control anything right now."

Anthony scored seven points during a 23-9 run that pulled the Nuggets to 95-94 with 5:30 remaining.

Then with the score 97-96, Gordon made two 3-pointers and Luol Deng added another to give the Bulls a 106-100 lead with 3:10 remaining.

"Those were big plays for us, because at the time we were struggling," Gordon said. "They were really making a thrust defensively and offensively."

The Nuggets rallied, with Earl Watson making a basket and Anthony hitting two free throws and a jumper to make it 108-107 with a 1:03 remaining. But they would go no farther.

Watson airballed a three with 30 seconds remaining, and Marcus Camby and Andres Nocioni got caught up on the rebound to force a jump ball. After two false tries, the Nuggets got the ball and called timeout.

After the break, Anthony drove down the right side, but Chandler got in position and blocked the shot. Denver fouled and Andres Nocioni made two free throws for the final margin.

"I knew the move he was going to go to," Chandler said. "Down the stretch we made the plays. Plays that we had been missing."

For the Nuggets, though, the game was another frustrating loss to a sub-.500 team -- their fourth straight.

"Every night for the last week and a half has been tough," Anthony said. "We wait for the last 12 to 15 minutes of the game to try and battle back, but by that time it's too late."

Game notes

Karl said he would be disappointed if no Denver player is selected to play in the All-Star game on Feb. 19. Reserves will be announced Thursday, and Anthony and Camby are both considered possibilities. Antonio McDyess was the last Nuggets player selected for the All-Star game in 2001. ... The Bulls snapped a six-game losing streak at the Pepsi Center.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


Team Stat Comparison

Points 110 107
FGM-FGA 39-90 (.433) 33-73 (.452)
3PM-3PA 10-21 (.476) 5-11 (.455)
FTM-FTA 22-33 (.667) 36-41 (.878)
Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 16-49 5-36
Assists 27 25
Turnovers 18 19
Steals 8 10
Blocks 2 9
Fast Break Points 12 31
Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 29 (3/0) 24 (2/0)
Largest Lead 20 2

Top Performers

Ben Gordon Gordon
Points: 30
Reb: 6
Ast: 2
Stl: 4
Blk: 0
Carmelo Anthony Anthony
Points: 31
Reb: 7
Ast: 2
Stl: 1
Blk: 1