Thursday , Nov , 17 , 2005 C.Y. Ellis

Ratliff slams home the win for Portland

Portland, OR (Sports Network) – Theo Ratliff’s dunk off a missed shot from
Sebastian Telfair with 8.7 seconds left boosted Portland to a 96-93 victory
over the Chicago Bulls at the Rose Garden.

Zach Randolph led the way with 22 points and 10 rebounds for the Trail
Blazers, who won for the third time in their last four games. Juan Dixon
tallied 16 points and Darius Miles scored 14 for Portland, which shot 26-of-37
from the foul line.

“I thought we showed a lot of aggressiveness,” Blazers head coach Nate
McMillan said. “They are a scrappy team, but I thought we scrapped a little
more. We showed our aggressiveness by going to the basket and shooting 37 free
throw attempts. The one negative, they pounded us on the offensive glass.”

Mike Sweetney came off the bench for 24 points and 14 rebounds for the Bulls
who are 1-39 on their annual November West Coast road trip. The team
traditionally plays on the road at this time since the circus is at United
Center.
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Andres Nocioni had 18 points and Ben Gordon scored 15 for Chicago, which has
lost two in a row to start their six-game road trip. The Bulls had 22
offensive rebounds to six for Portland.

“Basically, I’m failing right now,” Bulls head coach Scott Skiles said. “We’re
not playing any defense, that’s unacceptable for us. Basically I’m just not
getting it done.”

Kirk Hinrich gave the Bulls a 93-92 lead with a runner, high off the glass
with 15.3 seconds remaining.

Telfair slightly sprained his right ankle with 6:19 left in the game and had
to be helped to the locker room. However, he returned just over three minutes
later and nearly hit the go-ahead shot. His driving shot from the right side
missed, but Ratliff was all alone under the bucket and leaped to grab the ball
and slam it with two hands.

“It’s all about hard work and that’s what I try and bring every time I step
out on the floor,” Ratliff said. “We’ve got to take that attitude we had at
the end of the game to the beginning of the game and then we’ll be okay.”

Hinrich missed a shot from the left side at the other end, and Luol Deng fired
up an air ball from the right corner before the ball fell out of bounds to
Portland.

Dixon hit two free throws with 0.6 seconds left and Chris Duhon missed a
desperation heave from beyond half court.

The Bulls were in front by a point after the first quarter, but Portland ended
the first half on an 8-2 run to take a 61-52 advantage at the intermission.
Portland was in front 79-70 going into the fourth.

Chicago rallied and finally took the lead on a Deng dunk with 4:08 remaining
to make it 89-88 with 4:08 left, and the contest was tight until the end.

Game Notes

Ratliff and Jarrett Jack each scored 11 points…Hinrich had 14 points and
seven assists…The Bulls made all 15 of their free throws.

CHI POR