Bulls turn up Heat
Chicago ralllies to win Eastern Conference semifinal opener.
NATE ROBINSON scored 27 points, Jimmy Butler added 21 points and 14 rebounds while playing every second for the third straight game, and the visiting Chicago Bulls stunned the Miami Heat, 93-86, last night to take Game 1 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series.
Trailing 86-83 with 2 minutes left, the Bulls scored the final 10 points of the game to beat the Heat once again.
Joakim Noah added 13 points, Taj Gibson had 12 and Marco Belinelli added 10 for Chicago, which snapped a 27-game Miami winning streak during the regular season, and handed the Heat its first loss in its last 13 games in this one.
LeBron James scored 24 points for Miami, which got 14 from Dwyane Wade.
Game 2 is tomorrow night in Miami.
The Bulls were without Derrick Rose (knee), as they've been all season. Kirk Hinrich was out again with a calf injury. Luol Deng isn't even expected to rejoin the team until today, after dealing with an illness apparently so severe that a spinal tap - and other tests since - were needed to rule out things like meningitis.
James was honored before the game, with a brief on-court ceremony to commemorate his fourth NBA MVP award.
"It's an unbelievable achievement, but I wouldn't be able to do it without these 14 guys here, our coaching staff and most of all you guys," James said, speaking to the crowd. "This trophy is for you. So thank you so much, and let's get ready to go."
Earlier in the day, Belinelli learned that he had been fined $15,000 by the league for making an obscene gesture in the fourth quarter of a 99-93 victory at Brooklyn in Game 7 of their first-round playoff series.
The Brooklyn Nets have contacted Phil Jackson about replacing the outgoing P.J. Carlesimo, according a report.
Carlesimo was the Nets' interim coach after replacing the fired Avery Johnson in December.
A source told ESPN.com that in addition to Jackson, the Nets are interested in Larry Brown and Brian Shaw.
The report said Jackson could join the Nets as team president while getting a piece of ownership.
Shaw is currently an assistant with the Indiana Pacers. Brown, the head coach at SMU, and Nets general manager Billy King worked together for six seasons when Brown coached the Sixers.
* Oklahoma City's Derek Fisher was fined $5,000 by the NBA for flopping in Game 5 of the Thunder's first-round playoff series against the Houston Rockets.
Fisher's fine was the result of a play in the second quarter when both he and teammate Kevin Martin fell backward onto the floor to take a charge against Houston center Omer Asik. Asik was called for an offensive foul on the play.
Fisher became the second player to be fined under the NBA's new rules against flopping in the postseason. Indiana's Jeff Pendergraph was fined on Sunday.
* The Democratic National Committee says NBA veteran Jason Collins will headline its annual lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender gala.
Last week, Collins became the first active player in any of four major U.S. professional sports leagues to come out as gay. The DNC said first lady Michelle Obama will also attend the May 29 fundraiser in New York.