BOSTON (AP)Jayson Tatum had 36 points and 12 rebounds, including some late free throws to help the Boston Celtics hold on for a 123-119 victory over the Chicago Bulls on Friday night.
Malcolm Brogdon added 25 points on 9-of-10 shooting and Jaylen Brown scored 16 points for Boston, which has won two of three.
DeMar DeRozan had a season-high 46 points for Chicago. Nik Vucevic added 24 points and 12 rebounds and Zach LaVine finished with 16 points. Chicago was denied its first three-game winning streak of the season.
Boston took a 93-87 lead into the fourth quarter and increased it to 105-91 with just over seven minutes to play.
A 3-pointer by Vucevic capped a 12-4 run to help the Bulls cut their deficit to 109-103.
Brogdon scored on a driving layup, was fouled and completed the three-point play to briefly give the Celtics some breathing room.
Chicago stayed close and another 3 by Vucevic trimmed it to 114-110, followed by a miss by Boston’s Al Horford.
DeRozan was fouled by Derrick White and hit a pair of free throws. White responded on Boston’s next possession, drilling a 3 from the wing with 1:06 remaining.
Vucevic was good again from 3 on Chicago’s next trip to make it 117-115. Horford missed a corner 3, but Tatum pulled down the rebound and was fouled by LaVine.
Tatum made only one of his free throws, giving the ball back to Chicago. Tatum got a steal, but his outlet pass was picked off by LaVine. Patrick Williams misfired, it was gathered and tossed to Tatum, who was fouled.
This time he was good on both free throws and Boston was able to close it out at the foul line.
Bulls: Reserve center Andre Drummond sat for the fourth straight game with a sprained right shoulder. … Had 15 bench points after notching 49 in Wednesday’s win over Charlotte. … Ayo Dosunmu finished with 11 points, going 5 of 8 from the field. He entered the night shooting 90% (27 of 30), including 10 of 10 from beyond the arc, in four previous games against the Celtics. … Led 31-26 at the end of the first quarter.
Celtics: Led 63-57 at the half, outscoring the Bulls 37-26 in the second quarter. … New England Patriots coach Bill Belichick sat with Celtics president of basketball operations Brad Stevens in his suite.
The Celtics ended Chicago’s recent clampdown on the defensive end and avoided becoming the third consecutive opponent the Bulls had held below the century mark.
The Bulls dominated underneath the basket in their first meeting with the Celtics last month, holding a 12-point scoring edge in the paint on the way to a 20-point victory in Chicago.
Boston used much of the same blueprint Friday, outscoring Chicago 52-34 in the paint. The Celtics’ bench contributed 41 points.
Bulls: At Toronto on Sunday.
Celtics: At the New York Knicks on Saturday.
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