Rose, Gasol lead Bulls over Celtics

Boston, MA ( - Derrick Rose had 29 points and 10 assists and Pau Gasol added 20 points and 11 rebounds to lead the short-handed Chicago Bulls to a 119-103 win over the Boston Celtics on Friday.

The Central Division-leading Bulls were without big man Joakim Noah, who suffered a right ankle injury in the second quarter of Wednesday's loss to Washington and will reportedly undergo an MRI on Saturday.

Still, they led for the final 18-plus minutes, pulling away with a big run in the fourth quarter to avoid what would have been a season-high third loss in a row.

Jimmy Butler had 22 points in the win, which was just Chicago's second in six games since a 10-1 stretch.

"We started helping each other," Butler said about the fourth quarter. "We rebounded the ball, we didn't give up too many second-chance points. That's a key."

Jared Sullinger scored 20 points to lead the Celtics, who have dropped 11 of their last 14. Brandon Bass added 16 points and Kelly Olynyk scored 14, both off the bench.

"It's on us as individuals to be up and ready," said Celtics coach Brad Stevens.

The Bulls stretched a three-point lead to 17 with an 18-4 run in the fourth quarter. They buried four 3s during the flurry, including Rose's with 3:57 remaining to make it 111-94.

Boston was never closer than 12 the rest of the way and Chicago led by as much as 18 down the stretch.

Earlier, the Celtics shot 60 percent in both the first and second quarters but never led by more than six and were ahead just 58-55 at halftime. Eighteen players scored in the half, with only Bass reaching double digits with 10 points.

The Bulls took the lead for good on Gasol's jumper with 6:21 left in the third quarter but it was tight until their run in the fourth.

Game Notes

The Bulls have won three in a row over the Celtics and six of the last seven meetings. The finished 3-1 against Boston this season ... The Celtics start a six-game road trip against Western Conference teams on Monday in Los Angeles against the Clippers ... Chicago hosts Atlanta on Saturday.