Monday , Apr , 17 , 2006 C.Y. Ellis

Playoff-bound Bulls play with Magic

=== Playoff-bound Bulls play with Magic ===

(Sports Network) – The Chicago Bulls are headed to the playoffs for the second
straight year and will try to extend their four-game winning streak tonight,
when they visit the Orlando Magic at TD Waterhouse Centre.

The Bulls can improve their status in the playoff race, but are currently in
the eighth and final position in the Eastern Conference. Chicago clinched the
postseason berth with Sunday’s 117-93 win over the Miami Heat.

The win eliminated Orlando from the playoff chase.

Luol Deng celebrated his 21st birthday with a game-high 26 points and helped
the Bulls rally from a 15-point deficit to win their fourth straight game. It
was their first victory at Miami since January 18, 2000, ending an 11-game
road skid versus the Heat.

Ben Gordon and Andres Nocioni each added 18 points, while Kirk Hinrich
finished with 17 points, eight assists and six rebounds for the Bulls, winners
in eight of their last nine games.

Chicago has won five in a row on the road and owns a 19-21 mark away from the
United Center this season. The Bulls will close the out the 2005-06 regular
season at home versus the Toronto Raptors.

Meanwhile, the Magic will put their 12-game home winning streak on the line
tonight. They were eliminated from postseason contention after Chicago beat
the Heat, but have ripped off impressive wins down the stretch.

On Saturday at home against the Philadelphia 76ers, Dwight Howard poured in a
season-high 28 points and pulled down a career-high 26 rebounds in a 102-97
victory at TD Waterhouse Centre.

Jameer Nelson tallied 21 points and dished out eight assists, while Hedo
Turkoglu contributed 23 points in the Magic’s eighth straight victory.

The Magic, who are 26-14 as the host this season, will close out the 2005-06
campaign at Indiana on Wednesday.

Orlando halted a five-game series losing streak to the Bulls on March 28.
Monday’s game is the fourth and final meeting of the season.

Chicago leads the series 2-1 and has won its last four trips to Orlando.