Chicago uses defense to even series with Brooklyn
Chicago evened its playoff series the only way it knows how: with bruising Bulls defense.
Carlos Boozer had 13 points and 12 rebounds, Joakim Noah gutted his way through a foot injury to make three fourth-quarter baskets, and the Bulls beat Brooklyn, 90-82, on Monday night to even their first-round series at one game apiece.
Luol Deng bounced back from a poor opener with 15 points and 10 rebounds for the Bulls, who became the first team to win a road game this postseason.
Chicago held the Nets to two baskets in the third quarter to build a big enough lead to hold off a charge in the fourth.
Noah finished with 11 points and 10 rebounds for the Bulls, who host Game 3 on Thursday.
Brook Lopez scored 21 points for the Nets, who shot 35 percent from the field and were just 4 of 21 from 3-point range. Star point guard Deron Williams was 1 of 9, finishing with eight points.
After an unrecognizable defensive effort in a 106-89 loss in Game 1, when they allowed the Nets to shoot 16 of 20 in the second quarter, the Bulls got back to the mentality that has helped them overcome a number of injuries, including the absence of Derrick Rose.
Noah, who has battled plantar fasciitis and whose status was in question, played 26 minutes, just passing the 20-to-25 to which coach Tom Thibodeau said he would be limited.
Joe Johnson scored 17 points but shot 6 of 18 for the Nets.