NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Saturday, November 2nd (All times Eastern)
Chicago Bulls (1-1) at Philadelphia 76ers (2-0), 7:30 p.m.
(Sports Network) - Look who's sitting alone atop the Atlantic Division with a 2-0 record.
That distinction would belong to the Philadelphia 76ers, a team many pegged in the preseason to finish with the worst record in the NBA. The Sixers will try for their first 3-0 start since 2006-07 when they open a four-game homestand Saturday versus Derrick Rose and the Chicago Bulls.
The Sixers took down the two-time defending NBA champion Miami Heat on Wednesday, just hours after superstar Allen Iverson announced his retirement, then rallied to defeat the Washington Wizards Friday night in D.C. The 76ers erased a 12-point deficit in the third quarter at Washington for a 109-102 triumph.
Rookie point guard Michael Carter-Williams had 22 points, 12 assists and nine steals versus the Heat and followed that performance with 14 points against the Wizards, including 12 in the second half. Carter-Williams hit a 3-pointer with 6:28 to play to give the Sixers their first lead, which they would never relinquish.
"I think it was similar to the way we won against Miami -- the group's ability to stay together and just run, run, run, and run late in the game," said Sixers first-year coach Brett Brown.
"I think it helped us find a way to win, getting great defensive efforts and scoring out of it."
Thaddeus Young scored 29 points, Evan Turner had 23 and Spencer Hawes chipped in 16 points and 14 rebounds for the Sixers, who are slated to play six of their next seven games at Wells Fargo Center and are just one of two unbeaten teams in the East (Indiana, 2-0).
Meanwhile, the Bulls got into the win column on Thursday night with an 82-81 home victory over the New York Knicks.
Rose, in his homecoming after missing all of last season rehabbing a torn ACL, hit a floater with 5.7 seconds on the clock to give the Bulls the win.
"When it is my time in the fourth quarter I can't shy away from shots," said Rose, who finished with 18 points. "I just love being in that position, being in the fourth quarter having the ball in my hands. Making all the decisions I think is going to make me a better player so in the playoffs we're used to it and used to being in those types of games."
The Bulls rebounded from a bad opening night loss to the defending champion Heat. LeBron James and company received their championship rings, but Thursday was Rose's time to shine.
"I looked in his face after he made the shot. He was real emotional. I felt for him," said Taj Gibson. "After a long year being off, working so hard in the summer, grinding with us in practice. I'm happy for him."
Luol Deng (17), Carlos Boozer (14) and Jimmy Butler (11) all scored in double figures.
Chicago has been known for its defense under head coach Tom Thibodeau. Against the Knicks, the Bulls held New York to 36 percent shooting from the field.
The Bulls swept all three games against the 76ers last season, and have taken five straight in the regular season.
11/02 10:40:57 ET