February 10, 2018 / 5:34 AM / 10 months ago

LaVine steals show from Butler as Bulls edge Wolves

Zach LaVine scored 35 points against his former team, including three free throws with 18.4 seconds left, and the Chicago Bulls rallied for a 114-113 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Friday night at the United Center.

Robin Lopez added 19 points on 8-for-11 shooting as the Bulls snapped a seven-game losing streak. Jerian Grant recorded a double-double with 14 points and 11 assists.

The game marked the teams’ first meeting since a draft day trade that shipped Jimmy Butler to Minnesota for LaVine, Kris Dunn and a first-round pick (No. 7 overall) that the Bulls used to select Lauri Markkanen. Chicago sent back its first-round pick (No. 16 overall), which Minnesota used to select center Justin Patton.

LaVine and Butler traded big baskets down the stretch to set up a dramatic finish. Butler missed a 3-point attempt at the buzzer that would have given the Timberwolves the victory.

Butler scored a game-high 38 points against his former team. Karl-Anthony Towns posted his 49th double-double in 58 games with 14 points and 10 rebounds.

Minnesota lost its second game in a row.

Chicago trailed by five points with 1:20 to go but pulled within 111-108 on a dunk by LaVine with 1:11 remaining. Twenty seconds later, LaVine evened the score at 111 with a 3-pointer from the right wing.

Butler split a pair of defenders for a layup to put Minnesota on top 113-111 with 21.5 seconds left. On the opposite end of the court, referees ruled that Butler fouled LaVine on a 3-point attempt. LaVine sank all three free throws to put Chicago on top 114-113.

The Bulls erased a 17-point deficit early in the second half to grab an 89-86 lead entering the fourth quarter. Denzel Valentine capped the 33-13 run to close the third quarter with a basket at the buzzer.

Minnesota established a 67-56 lead at halftime. Butler hit a long-range 3-pointer with 1.3 seconds to go before the break to give the Timberwolves their largest lead of the first half.

The Bulls paid tribute to Butler and Taj Gibson with a video on the scoreboard during a stoppage in play in the first quarter. Fans roared for both players, who stood to acknowledge the ovation.

—Field Level Media

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