The effort was not there tonight as the Chicago Bulls fell to the New York Knicks 100-91 Tuesday night. Carmelo Anthony led the Knicks in scoring with 23 points in what should have been a win for the Bulls. Fighting to make the playoffs, it’s very important for the Bulls to win these games against bad teams down the stretch. And tonight, the Bulls chances to miss the playoffs showed they are very much alive.
The Bulls came into Tuesday with a four game winning streak, three of those wins against playoff teams, Bucks, Cavaliers, and Hawks. During the four game streak, the Bulls seemed to have moved away from their low effort, no hustle ways we have seen too much this season. But that would only be revived Tuesday night in Madison Square Garden.
A sixteen point second quarter killed the Bulls early in the contest. At one point, they went six minutes without a point. Meanwhile, the Knicks enjoyed a 22-5 in nine minutes in quarter two. The Knicks finished the half up 14.
Despite outscoring the Knicks in the second half 51-46, the Bulls were unable to come back and pick up the victory. Jimmy Butler’s 26 points did not keep the Bulls playing low tempo and sloppy basketball .
Into the fourth quarter, the Knicks were playing at a way different speed than the Bulls were to finish off the game. Tonight was not a good showing by Fred Hoiberg’s team fighting for a playoff spot and with the loss, the Knicks completed the season sweep from the Bulls, first time since 1999-2000.
The Bulls still sit in the 7th seed in the East but a Pacers win matches the records at 38-40. Next up, the Bulls head to Philadelphia to take on the 76ers on Thursday.