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Old 01-05-2015, 11:00 PM   #1
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Rockets lose late lead, fall to Bulls 114-105

Pau Gasol had 27 points and 14 rebounds, Jimmy Butler scored 22 points and the Chicago Bulls won for the 13th time in 15 games, rallying to beat the Houston Rockets 114-105 on Monday night.

Derrick Rose added 19 points. Nikola Mirotic had 17, and the Bulls outscored the Rockets 19-5 over the final 3:19.

Josh Smith led Houston with 21 points. James Harden scored 20, but the Rockets lost for the fourth time in six games.

Butler scored five points and took a charge against Harden during the game-ending rally to help the Bulls wipe out a five-point deficit.

Mirotic also hit a 3 and scored five points during that stretch.

It was 100-95 when Gasol converted a three-point play off a putback with 3:19 left to start the winning rally.

Butler tied it at 100-all with 2:56 remaining and drew a charge on the perimeter by Harden, who then fouled Gasol as he attempted a jumper. Gasol made both free throws to give the Bulls a 102-100 lead with 2:06 left.

Smith, who signed with Houston on Dec. 26 after being released by Detroit, answered with a 3 to give the Rockets a one-point lead. But Butler responded with one of his own to put Chicago back on top.

A driving Rose then got fouled by Beverley and hit both free throws to make it 107-103 with 1:07 left.

After Harden missed a 3, Mirotic made his attempt to make it 110-103 with 39.6 seconds remaining.

Gasol, who scored a season-high 29 in Saturday's overtime win against Boston, got off to a scorching start in this one.

His 18 points in the first quarter were two shy of a career high. He scored 20 in the half, but the game was tied 62-all at the break.

Harden had 17 points in the first half for Houston, making three 3-pointers. Beverley hit all six of his shots while scoring 12 in the half, and the teams basically spent the first two quarters trading runs and leads.



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