Butler scores career-high 53 to lead Bulls over 76ers in OT
PHILADELPHIA (AP) Jimmy Butler scored a career-high 53 points and E'Twaun Moore had seven of his 14 in overtime to lead the Chicago Bulls to a 115-111 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers on Thursday night.
Butler also had 10 rebounds and six assists while making 15 of 30 field goals and 21 of 25 free throws to help the Bulls snap a three-game losing streak. He became the first Chicago player to score 50 points since Jamal Crawford in 2004.
Robert Covington scored 25 points and Ish Smith had 24 for the 76ers, who fell to 4-37.
But the Sixers didn't go down easily in this one.
Nerlens Noel's follow put Philadelphia in front 108-104 just more than a minute into overtime. Moore followed with a 3-pointer, a drive and then a 15-footer for a 7-0 run that put Chicago up 111-108 with 2:35 remaining. Butler's layup made it 113-108 before Smith's 3-pointer cut the lead to 113-111 with 1:05 remaining.
Smith had a chance to tie it but his layup with 25.9 seconds left rimmed out, and Doug McDermott clinched the victory with a pair of free throws with 10.4 seconds to play.
Chicago was without star guard Derrick Rose and starting center Pau Gasol (rest). Joakim Noah, making just his second start of the season, had six points and eight rebounds in Gasol's place.
The Bulls outrebounded the 76ers 53-34.
Philadelphia scored the first eight points of the fourth quarter, capped by one of Covington's four fourth-quarter 3s, to take an 87-77 lead. But the Bulls, behind Butler's array of offensive skills, whittled away at the lead. He finally put Chicago Bulls ahead on a layup with 2:24 left in the fourth that made it 98-97.
After Smith's jumper put Philadelphia back in front on the ensuing possession, Butler converted a three-point play after draining a 15-footer to eclipse 50 points.
Smith then tied it at 101 on a drive before Moore's 3-pointer from the left wing put the Bulls ahead 104-101 with 1:17 left in regulation. Smith responded with a 3 of his own with 17.6 seconds left to tie it at 104.
The Bulls had a chance to win in regulation, but Butler lost control of the ball before attempting a shot.
The 76ers led by as many as 24 in the opening half, shooting 54.5 percent from the field while taking a 62-46 lead into the break.
Bulls: Rose (knee) sat out after participating in pregame warmups. He left in the fourth quarter of a 106-101 loss at Milwaukee on Tuesday. . Butler's previous career high was 43 points on Dec. 18 in a four-overtime game against Detroit.
76ers: Celebrities in attendance included Meek Mill, George Lopez and Montell Jordan, who sang the national anthem and performed at halftime. . F Jerami Grant (calf) didn't play. . Noel left the court due to nausea just prior to the opening tip. He was replaced in the starting lineup by Carl Landry. . Nik Stauskas left early in overtime with a bruised left shoulder.
Bulls: Host Dallas on Friday night.
76ers: Host Portland on Saturday night.