When a crucial victory over the Atlanta Hawks was about to slip away, Chicago's reserves came through.
"It was the biggest victory of the season," said Steve Kerr, who made two key three-point baskets after the Bulls squandered a 22-point lead at Chicago and then regrouped for an 87-70 victory on Monday that moved them within a half-game of Atlanta in the race for the Eastern Conference championship.
Atlanta, after withstanding a 17-0 run by the Bulls in the first half, put together a 24-5 spurt bridging the second and third quarters and gained a 51-51 tie with 4:39 left in the third on Mookie Blaylock's three-point basket.
But the Bulls, who went nearly nine minutes without a basket, rallied as Kerr made a pair of three-point shots and Toni Kukoc a pair of driving baskets in a 12-2 run that helped Chicago rebuild its lead to 63-55
Phoenix 106, Dallas 97--Charles Barkley scored 28 points at Dallas as the Suns tied San Antonio for the third-best record in the Western Conference.
The Suns (53-26), who have three games remaining, hold the tiebreaker edge over the Spurs because they won the season series, 3-1.
Phoenix held a 90-87 lead before Barkley made a pair of free throws and a 16-foot turnaround jumper from the left corner with 3:11 to play to make it 94-87. Kevin Johnson had 21 points and 14 assists for the Suns.