CHICAGO, Ill. – Coby White scored 19 points, Otto Porter Jr. added 18 in his return from a broken left foot and the Chicago Bulls hung on to beat the Dallas Mavericks 109-107 Monday night when Luka Doncic's desperation heave bounced off the rim.
Denzel Valentine added a season-high 17 points and the Bulls won for just the second time in 12 games even though leading scorer Zach LaVine sat out with a strained left quadriceps.
“We have been there a lot with winning teams,” Valentine said. “We've been right there. It actually feels good to come out here and beat a team like that.”
The Bulls thought they were ready to make a jump in the Eastern Conference and contend for a playoff spot after winning only a combined 49 games the previous two seasons. They've been hit hard by injuries and haven't performed the way they envisioned. But they're still in the running for a postseason berth, though their odds aren't great.
“We're not thinking about that,” Porter said. “We're just trying to get guys back and (pick up) the Ws right now. When it gets down to we're gonna need a couple games, then we'll get into a playoff mode where everything is very detailed.”
The Bulls outscored Dallas 33-17 in the third quarter to turn a 10-point halftime deficit into an 81-75 lead, and withstood a big push in the final minute.
The Mavericks were trailing 107-99 when Maxi Kleber dunked with 18 seconds left. Delon Wright then got a steal and fed Dorian Finney-Smith for a 3-pointer that made it a three-point game.