The Chicago Bulls used speed and crisp passing to run by the Miami Heat 107-89 on Tuesday in the NBA Eastern Conference playoff to take a 2-0 lead in the best-of-seven series.
Bulls guard Ben Gordon led all scorers with 27 points followed by team-mate Luol Deng, the hero of the first game, with 26. Deng brought the sell-out crowd to its feet with his late game heroics that included 14 fourth-quarter points.
"He's killing us right now and we've got to find a way to stop him," Heat forward Antoine Walker said of Deng.
Miami went with a smaller line-up in the fourth quarter, which Deng said sped up the game.
"We did a good job of pushing the ball," said Deng. "When we faced small line-ups this year we've done an effective job pushing the ball."
Heat guard Dwyane Wade led Miami with 21 points.
"This is one of the best home teams in the league. We knew that and hoped to steal one. We didn't get one." said Wade in the post-game press conference.
The series moves to Miami on Friday and Bulls coach Scott Skiles said that should prevent his team from becoming overconfident. He recalled two years ago when the Bulls went up 2-0 against Washington but lost the series 4-2.
"I know over confidence is not a problem," he said.
THIRD QUARTER SURGE
The Bulls led 56-52 at the half but came out firing in the third quarter to take an 86-71 lead into final period.
"They had a run in the third quarter and we were down 10 or 12 points," said Heat coach Pat Riley. "They did not shoot under 50 percent in any quarter. They were on fire tonight."
Riley, who has coached five NBA championship teams, said the Heat will have to fix some things or "it will be difficult for us to win at home."
Miami's veteran center Shaquille O'Neal finished with 17 points and eight rebounds and unlike the first game, escaped serious foul trouble, but was whistled for three.
The Bulls do-it-all guard Kirk Hinrich was less successful in the foul category, collecting five and playing a little more than 2- minutes in the fourth quarter. He had 14 points for the game.