Wizards come from behind again to shock Bulls in OT

Wizards come from behind again to shock Bulls in OT
April 22, 2014, 11:30 pm
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(Associated Press)

CHICAGO -- Everything went wrong for the Wizards in Game 2 -- blew a 17-point lead, missed 11 of 16 foul shots in the third and fourth quarters, trailed by 10 with seven minutes left in regulation, missed a chance to win it on the final shot and had three starters with five fouls -- but when this overtime game ended Tuesday they were headed home with a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven series by winning again vs. the heavily favored Chicago Bulls at United Center.

They were led in the 101-99 victory by Bradley Beal who scored 11 of his game-high 26 points in the fourth-quarter comeback, had 17 by Nene, 16 from John Wall and 10 from Martell Webster. Beal checked in with 5:15 left in regulation for Webster trailing 87-80 and scored nine of the Wizards' final 11 points. The Bulls were held without a field goal in the final four minutes. 

Beal had a chance to give the Wizards a one-point lead, but he only made 1 of 2 foul shots to leave the score tied at 91. His final shot at the buzzer to end it fell short. 

Nene scored the first six points of overtime to stake Washington a 97-91 lead, but the Bulls still had a chance. Kirk Hinrich missed the first of two free throws with 2.4 seconds left with the score 101-99. He intentionally missed the second one but the Bulls failed to collect the rebound. 

D.J. Augustin came off the bench to lead the Bulls with a playoff career-high 25 points. Taj Gibson had a playoff career-high with 22 points and 10 rebounds. No other reserve scored. Joakim Noah was one of two starters in double figures with 20 points and 12 rebounds. Hinrich scored 12. 

Wall scored seven points in the last 65 seconds of the first half to hold off a run by Chicago, which had cut into a 17-point deficit, to keep the Wizards ahead 56-49 but he didn't convert a field goal in the second half. He was 0-for-7, including overtime.  

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The Wizards now have won four of five meetings, including the regular season, with Chicago. Augustin was shut down by Trevor Ariza, going 2-for-8 from the field in the fourth quarter and not attempting a shot in playing all but 20 seconds of overtime. 

Ariza finished with eight points, eight rebounds and seven assists. 

Turning point: Trailing 87-77 with 6:59 left, the Wizards went on a 14-4 run to end regulation as they held the Bulls to 1-for-8 shooting and forced two turnovers in the last 1:41. 

Key stat: The Wizards' bench of Trevor Booker, Martell Webster and Andre Miller combined to shoot 10-for-15 from the field for 27 points. 

Mixing it up: Beal picked up the second technical foul of his career when he clashed with Hinrich with 4:10 left in the second quarter. Beal was trying to break free from Hinrich's grasp, and threw his arm out. Hinrich struck Beal in the back of the head. The result was a double technical foul and a personal foul on Beal. That energized the Bulls, who were able to trim the deficit to as little as one twice but couldn't get over the hump before halftime. Ariza and Noah traded elbows at 9:24 of the third and got into a shoving match. Both received technicals.  

[MORE: So much for Wittman's lack of playoff experience]

From the locker room: "Defensively, we got stops. We finally got a little more aggressive with Augustin and we got consecutive stops. That is what won the game. He put us in a situation to let us win with Beal's last shot. It was our defensive and rebounding that did it for us. They hurt us with offensive rebounding in the first half. Gibson and Noah really hurt us on the offensive boards. Trevor Booker came in and was really big for us playing defense and banging down on the block." -- Wittman 

"We did a great job staying calm and composed. Early in the season we would get rattled. Guys would try to make plays one-on-one. Tonight, we trusted our offense. We made the big shots and got offensive rebounds. Guys stepped up and got defensive stops down the stretch." -- Wall

"The altercation with Kirk Hinrich, it was us just getting tangled up. But that's playoff basketball. Everybody is fighting to win. He's a smart player. It was nothing too serious. It happened in the flow of the game. We both got Ts and moved on." -- Beal 

"Everyone knows we are a tough team. We don't shy away from contact. The game was kind of up and down. ... It was physical, then not physical. The game was altered." -- Gibson, who seems to be alluding to the way the game was officiated loosely to start then tightly after the altercations

Around the bend: The Wizards returned to D.C. after the game, will have off Wednesday and practice Thursday. They'll shoot around early Friday before Game 3 vs. the Bulls at Verizon Center (CSN, 8). 

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