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Bulls Gain Ground in Eastern Conference Playoff Race by Beating Washington
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Derrick Rose scored 24 points, Luol Deng had 14 in his return from an injury, and the Chicago Bulls gained ground in the Eastern Conference playoff race Friday night with a 95-87 victory over the Washington Wizards.

Joakim Noah added 10 points and eight rebounds in his return to Chicago's starting lineup. The victory put the Bulls 1{ games behind the Toronto Raptors, who currently hold the eighth and final postseason spot. The Raptors were idle Friday.

Taj Gibson added 14 points and tied a career high with 16 rebounds for the Bulls, who have taken advantage of a soft patch in the schedule to win five of seven games and are getting healthier down the homestretch.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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