2011 NBA Playoffs: Heat Torch 76ers; Rose Lifts Bulls Anew

The Chicago Bulls and Miami Heat—the top two seeds in the Eastern Conference—registered contrasting victories on Monday as the 2011 NBA Playoffs continued, to earn 2-0 leads in their respective first-round series.

As in Game 1, the Bulls again allowed the Indiana Pacers to hang around for most of the game before scrambling late for the W, with Derrick Rose, as always, bailing out Chicago. Rose followed up his 39-point outburst in Game 1 with a 36-point performance Monday, including eight points in the final four minutes, to help the Bulls hold off the Pacers, who showed for the second-straight game that they are more than just token opposition.

In Miami, LeBron James, Chris Bosh, and Dwayne Wade each outscored the entire 76ers first five in the first half as the Heat took control from start to finish en route to a lopsided, 94-73, victory. Unlike in Game 1 when they had to erase a 14-point deficit, the Heat clamped down on the 76ers offense from the opening tip off to limit Philadelphia to 31 points after 24 minutes of action. James finished with 29 points, Bosh had a double-double with 21 points and 11 rebounds, while Wade, who suffered from migraine a day earlier, chipped in 14 points for the Heat.