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Marco Belinelli hits the game-winner in overtime to send Bulls past Celtics (VIDEO)

Jan 18, 2013, 11:15 PM EDT

This was an amazing shot by Marco Belinelli, one that gave the Bulls a hard-fought 100-99 overtime victory over the Celtics in Boston on Friday.

But it shouldn’t have come to this for the Celtics.

Boston led this game by three with 20 seconds left in regulation. After a free throw from Kirk Hinrich cut the lead to two, the Celtics inbounded the ball to Paul Pierce along the sideline. He was quickly double-teamed, and the referee whistled an even quicker tie-up, resulting in a very questionable jump ball situation.

It didn’t appear that either of the Bulls surrounding Pierce had any possession of the ball, much less one that was shared enough to result in the call that was made. Nevertheless, when the ball went up with nine seconds remaining, and it was tipped to Belinelli, who pushed the ball up the floor.

Belinelli essentially turned it over with the game theoretically on the line, getting stripped as he drove into the lane with the clock winding down. The ball bounced to a wide-open Hinrich, however, who calmly knocked down the 15-footer to send the game to overtime.

Once again down the stretch, Belinelli found himself in control of the ball with the game in the balance. And again, he made a play that was questionable, at best.

With the Bulls trailing by one and 43 seconds remaining in the extra session, Belinelli found himself forced into the corner and launching a fadeaway three-pointer that barely drew iron. It was a horrendous possession, and far worse than the one that he used to end regulation.

These are worth mentioning, because if you’re the Celtics, you can essentially take comfort in the fact that you lost because of a questionable call near the end of the fourth quarter, followed by a lucky shot from a player falling down who had made terrible decisions on meaningful possessions before hitting this somewhat miraculous shot.

The Bulls got big games from Carlos Boozer and Joakim Noah on both ends of the floor, and a nice offensive contribution from Rip Hamilton, who finished with 20 points. The Celtics got a season high 30 points from Rajon Rondo, to go along with seven assists.

All of this is to say that despite the highlight you’ll no doubt see on an endless loop in the hours that follow, Belinelli was not very good in this game. But indisputably, he made the shot that mattered most.

  1. ho6an - Jan 18, 2013 at 11:29 PM


  2. charlescub80 - Jan 18, 2013 at 11:43 PM

    Noah & Boozer were BEASTS!

  3. jnoah13 - Jan 19, 2013 at 12:03 AM

    here comes the ‘refs bail the bulls out every time’ nonsense.

    • eagles92 - Jan 19, 2013 at 1:24 AM

      If you don’t think that was a complete b/s call to send this game into overtime you’re an idiot plain n simple

      • jnoah13 - Jan 19, 2013 at 3:02 AM

        i didnt say that, did I, idiot? I said here comes the conspiracy theorists that the bulls get all the calls at the end of games.

      • andyhr17 - Jan 19, 2013 at 7:57 AM

        It’s not a conspiracy theory, it was just a bad call. I didn’t know that you could force a jump ball after fouling someone and without getting your hands on the ball. Refs make bad calls now and then, that’s what happened. Feel free to thumbs down if you have biased towards the Celtics.

    • gmsingh - Jan 19, 2013 at 9:28 AM

      By “bail out” are you referring to the double technical called on Noah and Garnett when Garnett smashed Noah in the head with his forearm, or the five or six calls IN A ROW against the Bulls down the stretch? Here’s the formula: if you don’t have a superstar on your team that David Stern thinks makes the NBA money, the refs are going to do everything they can to make you lose. The Bulls play against the other team and the refs fake calls just about every night. Compare that to the six games in a row that LeBron went without a single foul called on him. Hell, David Stern makes Lance Armstrong look like an upstanding guy.

  4. scalfor3 - Jan 19, 2013 at 12:13 AM

    crappy way to lose, but that was a pretty good game

  5. asublimeday - Jan 19, 2013 at 12:26 AM


    • LilTmac2003 - Jan 19, 2013 at 6:35 PM

      Yeah, glad Bulls got the W.

      They played with heart out there.

      After Belinelli hit the game winner, he went to go guard Courtney Lee to contest the shot. Look at that replay — KG sets a screen and shoulders Belinelli right in his chest.

      That’s dirty.

  6. 32magicman - Jan 19, 2013 at 2:07 AM

    Would be interested to find out the league record for o.t. games in a season. Seems like there has been a bucket load this season!

  7. dko83 - Jan 19, 2013 at 4:23 AM

    Even Hubie saw he was fouled twice on that jump ball. Oh well, I hope we see Bulls in playoffs so we can have another epic series.

  8. beardown2489 - Jan 19, 2013 at 7:04 AM

    This game was poorly officiated all around. To blame it on one call is absurd. Do your job an watch the entire game.

  9. rodyaugu - Jan 19, 2013 at 9:03 AM

    Celtics fans always come up with the lamest excuses.

  10. doublezero74 - Jan 19, 2013 at 9:48 AM

    Bulls pulled it out of their a$$. They had at least 6 buckets on scramble plays at the end of the clock and they got open looks on lucky bounce of ball, end of regulation is case in point. Enjoy you W but know that you don’t deserve it

  11. knickstape84 - Jan 19, 2013 at 12:16 PM

    Bulls have benefited from the Refs all year… but both teams missing too many free throws never should have been in OT.. a jump ball when they don’t have there hands on the ball. and all of a sudden they can’t play physical in OT how they were all game. Bellineli flopping all over the place. it was an awful game to watch.

    • misterchainbluelightning - Jan 19, 2013 at 12:55 PM

      Im guessing 84 is your birth year, because I sure do read the same repetitive crying from you

  12. asublimeday - Jan 19, 2013 at 1:04 PM

    If you don’t think that was a complete b/s call to send this game into overtime you’re an idiot plain n simple

    • eagles92 - Jan 19, 2013 at 4:35 PM

      Count the rings bitch

  13. eagles92 - Jan 19, 2013 at 4:40 PM

    The idea of the bulls having a legit shot at winning an nba title any time soon are as real as manti teo’s girlfriend

  14. lucymyclos617 - Jan 19, 2013 at 6:56 PM

    Doc Rivers will submit game tape to the NBA in response to a jump ball call on Friday against the Chicago Bulls.

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