Bulls, Pistons clash in Game 6 at the United Center
(Sports Network) – The Chicago Bulls try to force a Game 7 against the
Detroit Pistons in their Eastern Conference semifinals series, as the teams
battle tonight at the United Center.
After dropping the first three games of the series, Chicago has come back to
win the last two contests. No team in NBA history has come back from a 3-0
deficit to win a best-of-seven set
On Tuesday, Ben Gordon scored 28 points as the fifth-seeded Bulls moved
halfway to NBA history by pounding the top-seeded Pistons, 108-92, in Game 5
at the The Palace of Auburn Hills.
Luol Deng had 20 points and Kirk Hinrich ended with 17 points and 13 assists
for the Bulls, who staved off elimination for a second straight game and shot
57.3 percent from the field, including an incredible 72.2 percent in the first
Chauncey Billups finished with 17 points in the loss to Chicago for the
Pistons. Richard Hamilton contributed 16 points, while Rasheed Wallace netted
15 for Detroit, which shot 42.3 percent from the floor in defeat.
Three teams have forced a seventh game after dropping the first three of a
best-of-seven series. Portland did it against Dallas in the first round of the
2003 playoffs, Denver versus Utah in the 1994 conference semifinals and the
Knicks in the 1951 finals against Rochester.
If necessary, Game 7 is scheduled for Monday at The Palace.
The Pistons, who swept No. 8 Orlando in the opening round of the postseason,
have won nine of their last 10 Game 6s in the postseason. Detroit, which has
made it to at least the conference semifinals for a sixth straight year, has
appeared in the East finals four straight years.
Chicago has lost two straight Games 6s. The Bulls swept the fourth-seeded
Miami Heat in round one of the postseason.
There is a lot of playoff history between Chicago and Detroit. This is the
sixth time these clubs have battled in the postseason. The Pistons have won
three of the five series.
Chicago eliminated the Pistons in seven games in the 1974 Western Conference
semifinals and swept Detroit, 4-0, in the 1991 Eastern Conference finals.
The Pistons beat the Bulls in five, 4-1, in the 1988 East semis. They also
knocked out Chicago in the Eastern Conference finals in 1989 (4-2) and 1990
Detroit won its fifth Central Division title in the past six seasons during
the 2006-07 campaign. The Pistons, who have reached the postseason for a sixth
straight year, fell in six games against the Miami Heat in last year’s Eastern
Conference Finals. The Pistons are the No. 1 seed for the third time in four
years and own home-court advantage throughout the East playoffs.
Chicago, which advanced past the opening round of the playoffs for the first
time since 1998 when it last won the NBA title, are in the playoffs for the
third straight year and 28th time in team history.