Chicago Bulls' D.J. Augustin (right) scores against Toronto Raptors during second half NBA basketball action in Toronto on Wednesday February 19

Raptors can’t ride Bulls, Augustin

TORONTO — In the world of professional sports, two months can feel like a lifetime. In a gritty 94-92 Chicago Bulls victory over the Raptors on Wednesday night, D.J. Augustin returned to Toronto to face the team that waived him in December and led the way. Augustin smiled when asked about the big night, but stressed the importance of getting another victory against an Eastern Conference opponent.

TORONTO — In the world of professional sports, two months can feel like a lifetime. In a gritty 94-92 Chicago Bulls victory over the Raptors on Wednesday night, D.J. Augustin returned to Toronto to face the team that waived him in December and led the way.

Augustin smiled when asked about the big night, but stressed the importance of getting another victory against an Eastern Conference opponent.

“It feels good,” Augustin said. “Not just with my past here, but because we’re fighting for the third spot with them so it feels good. It feels really good.”

Scoring 13 of his 19 points in the fourth quarter against his former team, Augustin got revenge on the team that sent him packing and the Bulls pulled out a huge win against the team that is directly above them in the Eastern Conference standings.

“D.J. has been huge for us,” Joakim Noah said of his point guard. “And I know this was a big game for him, too, being able to play in Toronto, the team that cut him, and play well like that and lead us to victory. That must be the best feeling in the world. Just prove your doubters wrong.”

Carlos Boozer led the Bulls with 20 points, Kirk Hinrich scored 19 points and Noah recorded a career-high 13 assists.

DeMar DeRozan led the Raptors with a game-high 32 points. Kyle Lowry added 16 points, but shot just 4-for-13 from the floor.

With Toronto having played in Washington the night before, the Bulls came out strong and led by 10 at the end of the first quarter. Toronto was able to trim the deficit to seven at the half. Chicago went into the fourth ahead by eight. Things stayed heated throughout the game, particularly down the stretch of the fourth quarter as the teams traded scores until a Jimmy Butler defensive stop on a DeRozan jumper with 2.9 seconds remaining allowed the Bulls to walk off the court victorious.

“DeRozan is a load and I thought Jimmy defended him on several plays as well as you can,” Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau said.

“DeRozan is a big-time player. Each year he has improved significantly to the point where he is as good as it gets. There’s constant pressure on you. Jimmy battled and that’s what I like about Jimmy’s mindset. He is going to keep coming.”

While DeRozan was unsuccessful down the stretch, the Raptors had a hard time criticizing the effort they received from their All-Star.

“He’s our go-to guy throughout the game,” Raptors coach Dwane Casey said of DeRozan. “He gave us 32 points and he’s going to grow into that role in closing games. That’s something he has to learn how to do. It’s not a lack of trying; he made a strong move there, got into the paint, rose up and got a shot off. I don’t know how you can fault it.”

It was Chicago’s first game since the all-star break layoff, but they showed little rust, and plenty of intensity.

Just Posted

Celebrating 4-20 in Red Deer

For years, 4-20 was a time to protest for the legalization of… Continue reading

Optimism remains for Red Deer hospital expansion

Red Deer’s incoming UCP MLAs both have been strong supporters of expansion

Sport of axe throwing growing in Red Deer

True North Axe Throwing wants sport to be ‘Canadian version of darts’

RDC cancels championship-winning golf program due to tight finances

Short season, small number of student golfers were also considerations

WATCH: An ‘Eggstemely Fun Easter’ at Bower Place in Red Deer

Bower Place mall made sure Red Deer families were able to have… Continue reading

Dozens hurt in collapse of deck during wedding celebration in Langley, B.C.

LANGLEY, B.C. — Police say dozens of people were injured, some critically,… Continue reading

No winning ticket for Friday night’s $25 million Lotto Max jackpot

TORONTO — No winning ticket was sold for the $25.5 million jackpot… Continue reading

Uber driver charged in two sexual assault investigations: Toronto police

Toronto police say an Uber driver is facing sexual assault charges in… Continue reading

PEI Green party candidate Josh Underhay and son killed in canoeing accident

CHARLOTTETOWN — With only a few days before voters were to go… Continue reading

Egyptians vote on changes that would extend el-Sissi’s rule

CAIRO — Egyptians cast their ballots Saturday on the first of three… Continue reading

Ex-Marine arrested in North Korea embassy attack in Madrid

WASHINGTON — A man suspected of involvement in a mysterious dissident group’s… Continue reading

New bout of heavy fighting in Yemen kills dozens

SANAA, Yemen — Yemeni officials say heavy fighting in Yemen’s southern Dhale… Continue reading

Most Read