If you didn’t watch this game and elected to do something else, congratulations. If you did and were doing it for some sort of enjoyment, take a look at your life choices.
The Bulls may have won 104-95 in Philadelphia to end a 3-game losing streak and win their 40th game of the season, but this was one of the worst performances of the Bulls’ season. And that despite the goodwill earned by playing without Derrick Rose, Jimmy Butler, Joakim Noah and Taj Gibson – a quartet that would make a pretty great core for any team.
We’ll skip to the third quarter since nothing of note happened in the opening 24 minutes of a game that felt a lot like a preseason contest – a weak crowd, two poor rosters and an overall lack of urgency.
The game was tied 51-51 going into the third quarter and 7:50 later the Sixers scored their first points of the third quarter. The Bulls scored just nine points in that period.
Yes, these two teams combined for 9 points in almost eight minutes of basketball. It was awful.
The Bulls led by 14 in the 14th quarter on the back of a typical Pau Gasol double-double night and some hot shooting from Aaron Brooks. Then it all fell apart.
Philadelphia mounted a comeback as the Bulls decided to take their foot off the gas and coast the rest of the way, allowing the Sixers to rally and take the lead 80-79 with 6:12 left in the game.
From there, the teams traded baskets until Tony Snell missed a running layup with 43 seconds remaining.
The Sixers would hit a pair of free-throws on the next possession before Brooks somehow connected on a wild fadeaway three to tie the game at 92 and send the game nobody wanted to watch into overtime. Free basketball never felt so unwanted.
Overtime served as the wakeup the Bulls needed as they outscored Philadelphia 13-3 in the period for the final margin, Gasol scoring for the first time since late in the third quarter and Brooks racking up points until he finished with 31, a season high.
This was utterly dreadful, uninspired March basketball. Classic Bulls basketball, really.