Wednesday , Feb , 22 , 2006 C.Y. Ellis

Bulls set for second half playoff push

(Sports Network) – The Chicago Bulls get the second half of their season
underway this evening when they continue a four-game homestand versus the
Milwaukee Bucks at the United Center.

Chicago has split its two matchups with the Bucks this season, but could hold
the advantage tonight, as the home team in this series has won 17 of the last
20 meetings. However, both teams have won on the other’s court this year.

The Bulls, who returned to the postseason last year after a six-year drought,
enter action this evening at 23-29 and two games back of the Philadelphia
76ers for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

Chicago, though, is coming off its most lopsided win of the season in its last
game before the All-Star break on Thursday, as Ben Gordon scored 12 of his
game-high 21 points in the opening quarter to help the Bulls blast the
Philadelphia 76ers, 117-84.

Kirk Hinrich added 18 points for Chicago, which led the entire way and coasted
to its second victory in three contests. The Bulls also improved to 17-6 when
reaching 100 points.

Tyson Chandler pulled down 11 rebounds in the win and has grabbed at least 10
boards in 11 straight games, the longest streak by a Bull since Dennis Rodman
did it from March 22-April 11, 1998.

The Bulls, who placed six players in double-figures, shot 52 percent from the
floor and 47 percent from beyond the arc while outrebounding the 76ers 53-30.

Gordon, who is averaging 24.3 points over the last seven games, was one of
three Chicago players who played on the Sophomore team during the Rookie
Challenge on Friday as part of the All Star Festivities. Gordon joined Luol
Deng and Andres Nocioni in the game and netted 17 points in the 106-96 win.

Chicago, which will close this stand against Detroit on Friday, is 11-14 in
its building this season.