Report card reflects Bears defensive gem vs. Detroit

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Report card reflects Bears defensive gem vs. Detroit

The defense allowed the Lions 91 total yards and zero points in the first half, of some significance given Detroits average of 25.2 points and nearly 420 yards per game. Detroit finished with 340 yards total but much of it was late and with the Bears playing to protect a 13-0 lead until the final minute.

Detroits game plan was curious: 52 pass plays, 15 run plays, despite running backs averaging more than five yards per carry. And the Bears were effectively neutralizing the Lions biggest offensive weapon.

DEFENSIVE LINE A-

Julius Peppers overran left tackle Jeff Backus for a first-quarter sack and came out of a second-quarter scrum with a fumble recovery to end a Lions scoring threat. Detroit tried to establish the run with Mikel Leshoure but the front left few gaps for yardage. Shea McClellin and Stephen Paea shared a second-quarter sack.

Henry Meltons forced fumble by Joique Bell at the Chicago one turned back a third-quarter Lions scoring threat. Israel Idonijes sack of Matthew Stafford in the final minute was a 19-yard loss. The line finished with six additional hits on Stafford.

LINEBACKERS A

Lance Briggs ended a Detroit second-quarter drive with a pass deflection and topped that on a crucial subsequent possession inside the Chicago 25 with a forced fumble. Brian Urlacher grabbed a Detroit fumble inside the Chicago 1 and was active in coverage with two pass breakups and a tackle for loss. Briggs had eight tackles and Urlacher seven, six of them solo. Nick Roach saw little action with the Bears playing predominantly nickel for the game.

SECONDARY A

Charles Tillman spent much of his evening shadowing Calvin Johnson and shut the Lions linchpin in the first half when Detroit netted 43 passing yards. Johnson was targeted three times with no catches in the half. He finished with just three receptions on the 11 passes thrown to him, and no touchdowns. Tillman broke up a throw to Johnson in the end zone and the Bears recovered a Detroit fumble a play later.

D.J. Moore ended a scoring threat with his second interception of the season while sharing nickel duty with Kelvin Hayden. Tim Jennings led the Bears with nine tackles.

Chris Conte and Major Wright delivered effective blitzes without getting a sack but pressuring Stafford. Each had a near interception and Conte was credited with six solo tackles.

COACHING A

The defense used occasional blitzes for pressure on Stafford and personnel shuffling confused the Detroit offense, including Johnson. The defensive line rotation was using a different foursome almost every play at times and the scheme forced the Lions to become impatient, leading to three red-zone turnovers.

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Doug McDermott scores career-best 31 to lead Bulls past Grizzlies

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Doug McDermott scored a career-high 31 points, Jimmy Butler had a pair of key baskets in the closing minute and the Chicago Bulls beat the Memphis Grizzlies 108-104 on Sunday night.

The Bulls broke a 104-all tie with 25 seconds left on a 15-footer from Butler and a pair of free throws by McDermott. Butler also had a go-ahead 18-footer with 53 seconds left and finished with 16 points to help Chicago win its second straight.

Taj Gibson finished with 18 points and eight rebounds for the Bulls.

Mike Conley led Memphis with 28 points and eight assists, and Marc Gasol had 24 points and 11 rebounds.

Chicago was without second-leading scorer Dwyane Wade, who did not play on the second night of a back-to-back after the Bulls beat New Orleans at home Saturday.

The game featured 16 lead changes and 11 ties, with neither team holding a double-digit lead.

Most of McDermott's damage came in the first half after the Bulls struggled shooting in the latter part of the first quarter. McDermott came off the bench to reverse the trend.

McDermott scored 20 points in the first eight minutes of the second quarter, moving Chicago's lead to eight. He had 22 points for the half and the Bulls led 52-46 at the break.

TIP-INS

Bulls: Nikola Mirotic missed his fourth straight game dealing with an illness. ... F Paul Zipser, a rookie from Germany, started his second game and second straight after coming off the bench in his first 10 appearances this season. ... McDermott converted a four-point play in the second quarter. ... McDermott's 22 first-half points were more than his total for the four previous games (21). ... Chicago scored 14 points in the first quarter, a season low for the opening frame. ... The Bulls are now 4-5 on the second night of back-to-backs.

Grizzlies: Gasol made a pair of 3-pointers in the first half, marking 17 games this season he has made multiple shots from outside the arc. ... Memphis made 11 3-pointers in the game and has converted at least 10 3s in 20 games this season, including 11 of the last 14 games.

MLK HOLIDAY

This is the 15th season Memphis has hosted a game on Martin Luther King Jr. Day weekend. The Grizzlies are 6-9 in the holiday game.

In recognition of the holiday, Memphis wore special MLK50 Pride uniforms. The black jerseys have sea foam blue numbers, letters and piping with the full T-shirt look instead of the normal sleeveless. The piping replicated the railing in front the rooms at the Lorraine Motel, where King was assassinated in 1968, and the blue color was similar to the doors on the rooms.

MISSING WADE

Wade's absence meant missing a reunion with Memphis coach David Fizdale. Both left the Miami Heat organization after last season - Wade signing with the Bulls and Fizdale getting his first head coaching job in Memphis. Fizdale said he is sort of a "basketball romantic" and would like to have seen Wade retire in Miami. But he predicted after the player's career "his statue will be out front and (Wade) will be remembered as the great player that he should be."

UP NEXT

Bulls: Return home to face the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday night.

Grizzlies: Memphis travels to Washington to face the Wizards on Wednesday night.