Basketball

Bulls sweep Heat

The Bulls swept the defending NBA champion Miami Heat out of the playoffs, winning a postseason series for the first time since the Michael Jordan era.

Ben Gordon scored 24 points, Luol Deng had 22 points and 11 rebounds and the Bulls beat Miami 92-79 Sunday in Game 4 to finish off their first-round Eastern Conference series. The Bulls, who will face Detroit in the second round, became the first team to oust a defending champion in the opening playoff series since Phoenix did it to San Antonio in 2000.

The coach of that Suns team? Scott Skiles, who coaches the Bulls now -- and who put together a plan that simply befuddled Miami all series long.

Dwyane Wade scored 24 points for Miami on 8-for-22 shooting, and added 10 assists. Shaquille O'Neal had 16 points, Alonzo Mourning scored 14 and James Posey had 18 rebounds -- a club-record 17 on the defensive end -- for the Heat.

The Bulls became the 80th consecutive NBA team to advance after taking a 3-0 lead in a series; only three teams in major pro sports have overcome such a deficit, and the Heat won't be joining the 1942 Toronto Maple Leafs, 1975 New York Islanders and 2004 Boston Red Sox in that exclusive club.

"Somewhere in the NBA it's going to happen," Heat coach Pat Riley said before Sunday's game. "One day, one team, will do that."

Not this day. And not this team. Riley shook Skiles' hand at midcourt when it was over, whispered a few words of encouragement, and then he and the Heat headed to their locker room -- without their crown.

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