Rookie Ben Gordon scored 12 of his 30 points in the fourth quarter Sunday, lifting the short-handed Bulls to a 103-94 home victory over the Washington Wizards and giving Chicago its first playoff victory since the dynasty days.
Fellow rookie Andres Nocioni also had a huge game, scoring 25 points and grabbing 18 rebounds while playing all 48 minutes.
Gordon scored 10 points as the Bulls opened the fourth quarter with a 13-4 run, then hit a 3 to put Chicago ahead for good, 87-84, with 8:18 to play. Antawn Jamison pulled Washington within 94-92, but Gordon was right there again, scoring on a fast-break layup. The Wizards failed to score in the last 3:21.
The loss spoiled a superb night by Larry Hughes, who scored 24 of his 31 points in the first half on 10-of-12 shooting. But the Wizards got little from the rest of their Big Three. Gilbert Arenas scored nine points -- 16 below his average -- on 3-of-19 shooting, and Jamison had 14 points.
Heat 116, Nets 98
Both of Miami's starting guards put up playoff career-highs in scoring, Dwyane Wade getting 32 points and Damon Jones 30 on 10-for-12 shooting before a home crowd.
Shaquille O'Neal, who suffered a deep right thigh bruise a week ago and has been hampered since, finished with 17 points and 11 rebounds in 32 minutes.
Jones was 7-for-9 from 3-point range, getting 14 of his points in the final quarter. And Wade was 12-for-18 from the field, with eight assists. Vince Carter had 27 points and 10 rebounds for New Jersey.
After Jones and Wade made consecutive jumpers to give Miami its then-largest lead, 20 points, with 7:48 left, Carter's deep 3-pointer with 6:37 left capped a quick 7-0 run that drew the Nets within 99-86. But O'Neal scored the game's next three points, and the outcome was never in doubt again.
Nuggets 93, Spurs 87
The San Antonio Spurs couldn't stop missing, and the Denver Nuggets walked off as winners.
Andre Miller scored 31 points and Denver held San Antonio without a field goal for more than 10 minutes of the fourth quarter Sunday as the Nuggets won on the road, defeating the Spurs in the opening game of their first-round playoff series.
Glenn Robinson made a 14-footer with 10:20 left in the game to put San Antonio up 81-76, but it would be the Spurs' last basket until Robert Horry hit a 3-pointer with 9 seconds left. In between, San Antonio missed 18 consecutive shots.