Nuggets defeat Bulls in controversial OT thriller
Chicago, IL (Sports Network) - Andre Iguodala's 3-pointer and Joakim Noah's offensive goaltending in the final 7.1 seconds of overtime kept the Nuggets' winning streak alive, as Denver escaped United Center with a controversial 119-118 victory over the Chicago Bulls.
After Iguodala's go-ahead make, Marco Belinelli drove the left side and threw up a jumper that appeared to be short. Noah swooped in and got a hand on the ball as it was coming down and celebrated with his teammates as the ball went through with 1.7 seconds showing.
But the excitement was short-lived, as officials overruled the bucket with the aid of instant replay, saying Noah touched the ball as it was in the cylinder to give the Nuggets their 12th consecutive victory.
"From my angle it look like a good play, it looked like it was short," said Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau, whose club has lost three of their last four. "I guess we have to call the league to get an interpretation."
Wilson Chandler scored 35 points for Denver, while Nate Robinson paced the Bulls with 34.
The goaltending call overshadowed a great game from Noah, who totaled 14 points, 12 rebounds, seven blocks and six assists and gave the Bulls a 117-116 lead with 32.8 seconds to go in overtime with a tip-in.
Noah blocked a Chandler shot in the lane on the ensuing possession, and Robinson went 1-of-2 at the foul line with 18.4 seconds to go.
Following a timeout, Andre Miller drew two defenders in the post and kicked it back to an open Iguodala for what turned out to be his 13th assist. Iguodala was 2-of-13 from the field prior to providing the fifth and final lead change of the extra session with a 3-pointer.
"Nine (wins) in a row in January and now with 12. We know we can win and play anyone," Denver head coach George Karl said.
The Bulls trailed 79-73 entering the fourth and were down by nine with 4 1/2 minutes to play, but pulled within a point, 103-102, on Belinelli's deep jumper with 1:03 remaining in regulation.
Miller drove inside for a tough bucket, but was whistled for a questionable traveling violation the next time down, giving the ball back to the Bulls with 17.7 seconds to play.
Robinson answered with a game-tying 3-pointer, and Ty Lawson airballed a 22- footer to send the game to an extra five minutes.
The Nuggets opened the second quarter on a 15-4 run and never trailed until the opening possession of overtime. Corey Brewer ended the spurt with a 3- pointer for a 36-24 cushion, and it was a 53-45 game at halftime.
Both teams had six players score in double figures ... Iguodala finished with 12 points and 10 rebounds ... Luol Deng scored 21 points for Chicago, which had eight fastbreak points to Denver's 30 ... The Nuggets have won four straight over the Bulls.
03/19 01:26:38 ET