76ers beat Bulls; Celtics even series

Published 2:28 am Wednesday, May 2, 2012

CHICAGO (AP) — Jrue Holiday scored 26 points, Lou Williams added 20 and Philadelphia beat Chicago 109-92 on Tuesday night to even their first-round series in the Bulls’ first game since Derrick Rose’s season-ending knee injury.

The point guard received a standing ovation and waved to the crowd as he limped onto the court to present the game ball, then watched from a suite as the 76ers outscored Chicago 36-14 in the third quarter to take an 83-69 lead.

Holiday was 11 of 15 from the field, and the Sixers shot 59 percent overall. Evan Turner chipped in with 19 points, seven rebounds and six assists.

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Joakim Noah led the Bulls with 21 points and eight rebounds and John Lucas III scored 15 points.

Rose missed 27 games during the regular season because of a variety of injuries, and the Bulls went 18-9 in those games.


ATLANTA (AP) — Paul Pierce had 36 points and 14 rebounds and Boston wiped out Atlanta’s 11-point lead in the second half even without point guard Rajon Rondo.

The series is tied 1-1. Game 3 is Friday night in Boston, and Rondo will be back for that one having sat out a one-game suspension for bumping an official in the opener.

The Hawks took a 65-54 lead late in the third quarter. But Boston sliced it to 66-61 by the end of the period. Pierce hit his first 3-pointer of the series after missing 10 to stretch the lead to 79-72 with 3 1/2 minutes left.

Pierce finished 12 of 26 from the field and dropped to his knee and Tebowed after a free throw that locked it up with just a minute to go.

Kevin Garnett had 15 points and 12 rebounds for Boston.

Joe Johnson had 22 points for Atlanta.

L.A. Lakers 104, Nuggets 100

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Kobe Bryant scored 38 points, Andrew Bynum followed up his playoff-opening triple-double with 27 points and nine rebounds, and the Los Angeles Lakers weathered Denver’s late rally for a 104-100 victory over the Nuggets on Tuesday night, taking a 2-0 series lead.

Pau Gasol had 13 points, 10 rebounds and five assists for the third-seeded Lakers, who still haven’t trailed in this series despite nearly crumbling against a much-improved effort by the Nuggets and Ty Lawson, who scored 25 points and led the fourth-quarter charge.

Los Angeles’ 19-point lead in the third quarter dwindled to four with 3 minutes to play, but Ramon Sessions scored four key points in the final 1:14 before Bryant’s icing free throws with 9.4 seconds left.

Game 3 is Friday in Denver.