Long time Bulls executive Jerry Krause dies at age 77.

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The Bulls regretfully announce that longtime Bulls executive Jerry Krause has passed away at the age of 77. Krause, the architect of the Bulls six World Championship teams, was a member of the Bulls’ front office for 18 seasons (March 26, 1985 – April 7, 2003).
“The entire Bulls organization is deeply saddened by the passing of Jerry Krause,” said Chairman Jerry Reinsdorf. “Jerry was one of the hardest working guys I have ever been around, and he was one of the best talent evaluators ever. Jerry played an integral role in our run of six championships in eight years. He truly was the architect of all our great teams in the ’90s. I would not have been elected to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame if it were not for Jerry. We will miss him tremendously, and we send our thoughts and prayers to his wife Thelma and the Krause family.”

Krause, a native of Chicago, took over the Bulls basketball operations department on March 26, 1985, following a successful run as a scout for the Baltimore Bullets, Phoenix Suns, Los Angeles Lakers and, previously, the Bulls (1969-71). During his NBA career, he was responsible for the drafting of future Hall of Famers Earl Monroe, Wes Unseld and Scottie Pippen. He also played a key role in the drafting of four NBA Rookie of the Year recipients in Monroe, Unseld, Alvin Adams and Elton Brand. In addition, Krause worked to select other NBA stars such as Jerry Sloan, Norm Van Lier, Clifford Ray, Michael Cooper and Norm Nixon.

Krause is survived by his wife, Thelma; his two children, Stacy and David; and, his grandchildren Colette, Josh, Mia and Riley.Krause was general manager of the Bulls from 1985 to 2003, putting together the roster around Michael Jordan that won six titles in eight seasons, including the a 72-win season in 1995-96. He also made the decision to hire Phil Jackson. He was considered a divisive figure after clashes with Jackson, Jordan and other players over contract disputes. Krause drafted both Scottie Pippen and Horace Grant, both key pieces of the Bulls’ first championship team. Krause replaced coach Doug Collins with Jackson, which was a bold move considering the Bulls’ success at the time. That worked out pretty well. In 1988, Krause traded Jordan’s good friend Charles Oakley to the Knicks for Bill Cartwright. The Bulls needed another true big man and Cartwright played a pivotal role. Jordan was furious with the move, but eventually had to give Krause credit for the decision. Krause took a massive gamble in 1995, trading career reserve Will Perdue for Dennis Rodman. Krause trusted the Bulls’ infrastructure to handle Rodman’s explosive personality, and the move helped secure not only the 72-win season, but the second trio of titles. Krause was ahead of his time in many ways. He identified the need for big, athletic perimeter players like Pippen, Ron Harper and Grant. Krause found Toni Kukoc and spent years trying to get the Croatian to make his way to the NBA. Pippen and Jordan, annoyed at Krause’s obsession while he balked at giving them bigger deals, grew resentful of Kukoc before he even arrived. In today’s NBA? He’s basically a better version of Dario Saric, and Krause would be applauded for finding that kind of talent. Krause made a gamble for a skilled European forward at a time when there was very little faith in the game overseas. Krause rubbed people the wrong way. In books like The Jordan Rules by Sam Smith and Playing For Keeps by David Halberstam, Krause comes across as petty and jealous — particularly of Jackson. Credit and recognition were important to him, and it drove him mad that Jordan and Jackson seemed to get all of it. Meanwhile, Jackson was annoyed by Krause’s behavior and Jordan downright loathed him. In years since, the story of Krause becomes a little clearer. He comes across as a man who was indelible to the Bulls’ success and basically caught flak for not being likable. Jordan, on the other hand, was ruthless, cruel and domineering to everyone he faced in his professional life in front of and behind the scenes, but because he is considered the greatest player of all time, he has been loved unconditionally. Basically, Krause got a bad rap because he was never going to sell any posters. Krause might have had character flaws, like everyone does. But don’t undersell what he brought to the table. The Bulls were great, magnificent, because of Jordan, who Krause did not draft. But the Bulls became a dynasty because of the margin moves, big and small, that Krause had the courage to make.

Illini beat Boise State to advance to NIT quarter Finals

Illinois Fighting Illini (2004 - 2013)

CHAMPAIGN—Tracy Abrams scored 18 points, Leron Black had a double-double and Illinois pulled away midway through the second half to beat Boise State 71-56 on Monday night in the second round of the NIT.No. 2 seed Illinois (20-14) will play fourth-seeded Central Florida (23-11) in a quarterfinal. The game was tied at 49 with 10 minutes left before Illinois closed on a 22-7 run.Malcolm Hill scored 13 points and has 1,817 for his career, surpassing Dee Brown (1,812) for third place all-time at Illinois. Abrams was 6 of 11 from the floor and made three 3-pointers. Black had 12 points and 10 rebounds.Chandler Hutchison scored 17 points and grabbed eight rebounds to lead No. 6 seed Boise State (20-12). Nick Duncan chipped in 12 points. The Broncos shot 0 of 14 from long range in the second half.Brad Underwood, who became the 18th coach in program history for the Illini, was in attendance. He replaced John Groce after five seasons.

UIC beats G.Washington to advance to CBI third round

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UIC got 23 points from Tai Odiase and a career high 12 assists from Tarkus Ferguson in an 80-71 victory over George Washington in the quarterfinal round of the CBI presented by FIVE FOUR at UIC Pavilion Monday evening. The Flames led by as many as 17 points, but the battle tested Colonials closed the gap to two points in the final two minutes. UIC made six of eight free throws down the stretch to advance to the CBI semifinals against Coastal Carolina.The Flames (17-18) placed five scorers in double figures. Tarkus Ferguson tied his career high with 10 rebounds and set a new career standard with 12 assists. The Flames assisted on a season high 24 of their 29 field goals and won the rebounding battle 45-31. George Washington (20-15) got 24 points from Tyler Cavanaugh and 21 from Yuta Watanabe, but no other Colonial scored more than nine.UIC will continue its postseason run with a CBI semifinal game Wednesday evening at Coastal Carolina. The tournament is re-seeded following the quarterfinal round.

ISU blows chance to host Illinois. Let 13 point lead get away

NORMAL—B.J. Taylor scored 22 points, including a pair of free throws with 1.3 seconds left and Central Florida beat Illinois State 63-62 Monday night in the second round of the NIT.No. 4 seed UCF (23-11) will play the Boise State-Illinois winner in a quarterfinal. Top-seeded Illinois State (28-7) had its 22-game home winning streak snapped.Taylor scored 17 points in the second half and finished 11 of 11 from the line. Matt Williams added 15 points and A.J. Davis 11 for the Knights.Deontae Hawkins scored 15 points to lead ISU.UCF trailed by 13 early in the second half, and took its first lead of the game when Davis converted a 3-point play for a 61-60 lead with 1:40 left.With the game still 61-60, Taylor fouled MiKyle McIntosh at the top of the arc with four seconds left. McIntosh made both free throws and the Redbirds led 62-61 with four seconds to play.Following a timeout, Taylor ran the floor and McIntosh fouled him along the baseline. Paris Lee’s desperation 3-point attempt was short to end it.

Hawks score three goals in :34 onslaught to beat Avs 6-3, clinch Playoff birth.

After a sluggish start, Jonathan Toews and the Blackhawks stormed back late with a rapid-fire rally to strengthen their grip on first place in the Central Division – and the Western Conference.Toews scored twice and Richard Panik and Artemi Panarin each had a goal in a span of 3:02 in the third period to erase Colorado’s two-goal lead and send the Blackhawks past the Avalanche 6-3 on Sunday night for their fifth straight win.Patrick Kane scored his team-leading 32nd goal and Marcus Kruger added an empty-netter for the Hawks, who won for the 17th time in its last 20 games to pull seven points ahead of slumping second-place Minnesota in the Central Division. The Wild dropped their fifth straight, 5-4 to Winnipeg on Sunday.The victory, combined with Los Angeles’ 5-2 loss at Calgary on Sunday night, clinched the Blackhawks ninth straight playoff berth.

”Once we got that first (goal), things just started clicking for us,” said Toews, who scored his 19th and 20th goals to give him 20 or more in each of his 10 NHL seasons. ”I think we all collectively made that decision, that we had to play better and were looking for that first bounce, and maybe we could put some pressure on them.”

And the Blackhawks turned it up in a hurry.With the Hawks trailing 3-1, Toews tipped in a bouncing shot at 10:17 of the third period to cut it to 3-2.

”In the third period, we got one, and all of a sudden got a lot more comfortable in the scoring areas,” coach Joel Quenneville said. ”Definitely changed the whole complexion when we got the first one.”

Toews’ first goal withstood a video review that showed the Hawk captain may have been offside. He was trying to exit the Colorado zone and tag up at the blue line before Panik – who was skating into the Avalanche end – caught up with a puck that had just crossed the line and was inches ahead of his stick.It was close.

”I thought it was the right call. It’s not offside, doesn’t trigger the offside until he touches the puck,” Quenneville said. ”You could say it was a tie.”

Avalanche coach Jared Bednar was left a bit confused.

”I guess I don’t fully understand it,” Bednar said. ”It’s a tag-up rule. They’re saying it wasn’t fully on (Panik’s) stick.

Bednar was more upset about what followed.

”That give them a little life,” Bednar said. ”It’s what we do after that that bothers me.That was one of the top teams in the league turning it up a notch and feeling it, and their top guys making plays and our guys making mistakes.”

Panik rifled in a loose puck from the slot 17 seconds later to tie it at 3. Panarin put the Hawks ahead 4-3 just 17 seconds after that on a shot from the right circle that deflected in off the shoulder of Colorado goalie Jeremy Smith.Toews stretched it to 5-3 with his 20th on a wrist shot from the left circle with 6:41 to go.Mikhail Grigorenko scored twice and Sven Andrighetto had a goal for the last-place Avalanche.Scott Darling stopped 22 shots to extend his winning streak to six games.The 27-year-old Smith made 28 saves in his seventh NHL appearance and sixth start. His only win was on Feb. 25 when Colorado beat Buffalo 5-3.Grigorenko, a scratch in Detroit on Saturday, ended an eight-game drought with his eighth and ninth goals. Andrighetto, acquired from Montreal at the NHL trade deadline, scored his second goal in eight games with the Avalanche.Kane opened the scoring 4:33, ripping a feed from Panarin past Smith high on the stick side to complete a 2-on-1 break.Grigorenko tied it at 1 at 8:14 when he fooled Darling from a scramble in front with a low shot to the lower right corner.The 22-year-old Grigorenko struck again with 3:24 left in the period to make it 2-1. He backed in Brent Seabrook as he moved in 1-on-1 against the veteran defenseman, then popped an off-balance shot that clanked off the right post and in.Darling made a point-blank pad stop on Mikko Rantanen with 7:05 left in the second, then a close-in glove save on Joe Colborne about two minutes later to keep the margin at one goal.But with 3:35 left the period, Andrighetto cut across the crease unchecked in front of defensemen Trevor van Riemsdyk and Brian Campbell and neatly tipped Mark Barberio’s drive over Darling’s glove to increase Colorado’s lead to 3-1.

NOTES—Artem Anisimov missed his third game and RW Marian Hossa his second with injuries. Before the game, Quenneville said Hossa was close to returning and thought he might play on Sunday. … Quenneville gave 35-year-old D Johnny Oduya the game off to ”rest.” … Grigorenko had one previous two-goal game, at Anaheim in November 2013. He was Buffalo’s first pick and 12th overall in the 2012 draft and was acquired in a multi-player deal in 2015….The Blackhawks host Vancouver on Tuesday in the second of a three-game homestand. They play six of their last eight regular-season games on the road.

NU hosed by awful (non)call, Zags advance

Northwestern Wildcats (1981 - Pres)Image result for ncaa men's tournament 2017 logo


SALT LAKE CITY—Chris Collins was right. It was goal-tending all the way.The Northwestern coach was also wrong. At the worst time possible.After not getting the call, Collins stomped onto the court and drew a technical foul with 4:54 left in Saturday’s game, sucking life out of a frenetic comeback that fell short in a 79-73 loss to top-seeded Gonzaga.What a strange, heartbreaking way to close out the school’s first-ever trip to the NCAA Tournament.Adding to the awkwardness: The NCAA released a statement acknowledging the call was missed, and Collins was sitting at the postgame news conference when he learned about it for the first time.

”I appreciate the apology,” Collins said, the venom practically dripping off his tongue. ”It makes me feel great.”

Nigel Williams-Goss finished with 20 points, eight rebounds and four assists to power Gonzaga (34-1), which led by as many as 22 points in the first half, then saw the lead dwindle to five with a little more than 5 minutes left.The arena, drenched in purple, was rocking, and all the momentum was in Northwestern’s corner.The eighth-seeded Wildcats (24-12) got the ball down to Dererk Pardon for a point-blank shot that was on its way in. Gonzaga 7-footer Zach Collins reached up through the net and deflected the ball out. No whistle blew. Gonzaga got the rebound and started down court. Collins ran onto the court, charged toward the referee and gestured as if he were knocking a ball out of the hoop from the bottom.An automatic ”T.” The NCAA’s postgame statement also said Collins was hit with the technical for violating ”bench decorum” rules by stepping onto the court with the ball in play.On the other end, Williams-Goss made both free throws. Northwestern never got closer after that.Regrets? If the coach had any, they weren’t apparent in the aftermath.

”If I see a guy from another team put his hand through the rim and block a shot, I’m going to react to it if the play isn’t called,” Collins said. ”I think all of you would. Of course. That cuts it to three. We’re all emotional. We’re coming back from 20 down.”

What a comeback it was. Bryant McIntosh scored 13 of his 20 points in the second half and Vic Law had 15 of his 18, as Northwestern finally found an answer for Gonzaga’s quick guards and smooth-as-can-be ball movement.Law dunked an offensive rebound to cut the deficit to 63-58, and on the other end, Scottie Lindsey swatted Williams-Goss down low to give Northwestern the ball with a chance to draw within a 3-pointer.Pardon took a pass from McIntosh and went up strong against Zach Collins for what should have been two points. After the game, the Gonzaga center was still unclear about what, exactly, happened.

”I thought I blocked the shot and they thought it was a foul,” he said. ”We weren’t really worried about (that). I honestly can’t really remember.”

Zags coach Mark Few wasn’t pinning Gonzaga’s win on that single turn of events. But he more than understood the emotion of the moment.

”You guys feel it and see it when it comes to these games,” he said. ”You lose, your season’s over. You win, in Northwestern’s case, it’s probably the best thing they’ve done in the history of the school. You react spontaneously and stuff happens.”

Gonzaga is onto its third straight Sweet 16, in search of the program’s first trip to the Final Four.Painful as the late sequence was for the Wildcats, chances are it won’t be the only thing about this magical season that they remember.

”To me, the second half is who that group was,” Chris Collins said.

But losing, especially that way?

”It stinks. That’s the part of the tournament that’s really hard,” he said.

NOTES—The Wildcats had more trouble stopping 7-foot-1 Przemek Karnowski’s backup than Karnowski himself. The senior missed his first three shots and never got into much of a groove on the way to nine points. His backup, Collins, had 14 points, including back-to-back three-point plays that pushed Gonzaga’s lead back to 19 in the second half after it had briefly dropped to 12…..For the second straight game, McIntosh had a memorable second half, but it was the first half that made the difference. He shot only 3 for 9 in the first half, part of a 30 percent shooting effort by the Wildcats, who made only 1 of 11 from 3-point range over the first 20 minutes…..Adding to their coach’s frustration: The Wildcats finished the game with 26 fouls. Pardon fouled out and three players, Lindsey, Barret Benson and Gavin Skelly, finished with four each.

NU wins heart stopper from Vandy–Zags next!

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SALT LAKE CITY—At Northwestern, the party goes on.At Vanderbilt, there is only one question: What was he thinking? Northwestern’s first-ever NCAA Tournament victory, 68-66 over Vanderbilt, came after Commodores guard Matthew Fisher-Davis inexplicably grabbed Bryant McIntosh of the Wildcats on purpose, sending McIntosh to the free throw line for the go-ahead points with 15 seconds left.

”I actually thought we were down one,” Fisher-Davis explained after Thursday’s heartbreaker in the West region. ”Coach … pointed at him, but he was just telling me that was my matchup. I took it as (I should) foul. It was just a dumb-ass foul.”

And though Fisher-Davis scored 14 of his 22 points in the second half to help ninth-seeded Vandy (19-16) rally from 15 points down, his mistake was the main takeaway from this game – maybe not as bad as Chris Webber calling a timeout that Michigan didn’t have or Georgetown’s Fred Brown throwing the pass to James Worthy of North Carolina in the final, but certainly not one for the ”One Shining Moment” video, either.

”An honest mistake,” Northwestern coach Chris Collins called it. ”You feel bad for players. He was tremendous today. Certainly, I was surprised.”

The sequence was set up after Riley LaChance made a layup with 18 seconds remaining to put the Commodores up by one.But seconds after the in-bounds pass, Fisher-Davis reached out and grabbed McIntosh around the waist while the Northwestern guard was dribbling up the backcourt. That put eighth-seeded Northwestern in the double bonus, and McIntosh went to the line and calmly swished the free throws with 15 seconds left for a 67-66 lead.

”When he grabbed me, I had thought we were down one, and I’m thinking maybe I made a mistake,” he said. ”I had to put my mind on making the free throws at the end.”

Northwestern forced LaChance to miss a 3 on the next possession and the Wildcats sank (24-11) another free throw.Fisher-Davis heaved a desperation shot at the buzzer, but it missed, and he sunk his head and reached down to his shoes in despair before heading to the sideline where his teammates hugged him.While the Wildcats doused Collins with water to celebrate a win that extends the program’s first trip to March Madness by at least one more game, there were red eyes in the Vanderbilt locker room. But Fisher-Davis’ teammates had his back.

”He’s the type of person (who’s going to) feel some blame,” forward Luke Kornet said. ”But in the second half, we have no chance if he doesn’t make the shots that he made. We’re with him no matter what.”

Coach Bryce Drew, who enjoyed a much different moment decades ago as a player , said certainly he and his star guard would talk more in the near future. His message in the aftermath was simple: ”From Day 1, we teach our guys that we’re a team and one play at the end … doesn’t win or lose the game.” …..Fisher-Davis, a junior who led the SEC in 3-point shooting last season, tried to keep it in perspective.

”We all love each other like brothers,” he said. ”They know I didn’t do that on purpose, obviously. We had a great season. Nothing to be ashamed of.”

NOTES—McIntosh said he, like most players, has always dreamed about scoring the winning points in March Madness. Just not quite that way. ”You don’t imagine yourself down 1 and being fouled. You envision yourself hitting the game-winner. But to be able to do that at the free throw line was relaxing.” The junior led the Wildcats with 25 points…..Fisher-Davis hit a pair of 3-pointers during a 12-0 run that kept Vanderbilt in it after falling behind by 15 with 13 minutes left. He also had back-to-back buckets and made all three free throws after being fouled on a 3 to pull Vandy within 59-58 at the 2:40 mark…..Collins called the pro-Wildcats crowd one of the best he’s seen at the tournament. He played at Duke. ”When you dream about these games, you don’t dream about losing them. You don’t dream about playing scared. You don’t dream about being timid. You dream about playing with confidence, and you dream about winning,” he said……NU will play top-seeded Gonzaga in the second round of the West region Saturday.

ND escapes with close win over Princeton.

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BUFFALO—Bonzie Colson scored 18 points and Notre Dame survived a first-round NCAA Tournament scare by pulling out a 60-58 win over Princeton.The West Region’s 12th-seeded Tigers had a chance to pull ahead on their final possession, but Devin Cannady missed an open 3-pointer just before the final horn. Notre Dame’s Steve Vasturia pulled down the rebound and was fouled.The Fighting Irish (26-9) nearly squandered an 11-point second half lead. Guard Matt Farrell scored 16 points, but missed the front end of a one-and-one with Notre Dame up 59-58.Spencer Weisz led the Tigers with 15 points. The Ivy League champion Tigers (23-7) had a 19-game winning streak going into the NCAA Tournament.

UIC win CBI First Round game against Stoneybrook

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UIC picked up the program’s second postseason win Thursday night by defeating the Stony Brook Seawolves, 71-69, at the UIC Pavilion in the First Round of the 2017 CBI.The Flames (16-18) led by three at the half and extended their advantage to as many as 19 points in the second half. Stony Brook (18-14) mounted a furious comeback and pulled to within one possession on multiple occasions in the final minute, but UIC hung on for its first-ever triumph in the College Basketball Invitational.Dominique Matthews scored a game-high 21 points with a career-high six 3-pointers. In total, five Flames scored at least eight points. Clint Robinson tallied 11 to go along with six rebounds off the bench, while Tarkus Ferguson flirted with a triple-double as he registered eight points, seven rebounds and a game-high 10 assists.With the win, the Flames advance to the quarterfinals, where they will host George Washington (20-14) at the Pavilion on Monday, March 20 at 7 p.m.The Flames will host George Washington in the quarterfinals of the 2017 CBI on Monday, March 20 at the UIC Pavilion. The game will tip at 7 p.m. George Washington is 20-14 on the season as they picked up win No. 20 in the first round of the CBI on Wednesday when it beat Toledo, 73-69. UIC is 2-1 all-time against the Colonials, however all three of those meetings were prior to the Division I era.

Darling sharp, Panik scores game winner in 2-1 victory over Sens

OTTAWA—Scott Darling and Ottawa netminder Mike Condon had to put their friendship on hold Thursday night.Darling made 33 saves and Richard Panik scored the tiebreaking goal late in the third period to lift the Blackhawks over Condon and the Senators 2-1.Panik beat Condon on the power play at 16:59 of the third, finding the back of the net on a one-timer off a feed from Patrick Kane, who was behind the net.

”It’s fun. We’ve been friends for 10 or 12 years, and it’s the fifth time we’ve played each other in pro and we love it. Second NHL game, but we’ve played each other twice in the (American Hockey League) and once in the (ECHL),” Darling said. ”We’re great friends and we both want to win. I’m happy he played well but I’m happy I won.”

Duncan Keith had the other goal for the Blackhawks, who got their second straight win.Condon made 26 saves for the Senators, who failed to jump into first place in the Atlantic Division. Kyle Turris scored the lone goal.Keith opened the scoring 8:04 into the third period. Condon made the initial save on the shot but the rebound bounced off a collection of bodies in front of the net before crossing the goal line.

”I thought the rebound was going far right so I tried to extend, then it hit a skate and went the other way,” Condon said. ”I tried to lay back and cover it up, but the guy tapped it in.”

Turris tied the game at 11:23 on the power play with a one-timer from the right side that beat a screened Darling over the shoulder with Bobby Ryan on top of the crease.

”It was good to take advantage of an opportunity there. I was just trying to get the puck through because we’ve been struggling on the (power play),” Turris said. ”It’s a frustrating result. I thought we played a pretty solid, structured game, it just got away at the end there.”

Neither team was able to score despite firing 43 combined shots on goal through two periods.The Senators had 21 shots on Darling through the first two periods but another 23 were blocked by Blackhawks skaters. Condon made 22 saves while his teammates blocked 10 additional shots.Condon’s best save was a glove grab against Artemi Panarin in the second after Senators forward Derick Brassard tried to clear the puck behind the goal but it bounced off the side of the net right to Panarin in the slot.

”There wasn’t much of back and forth and it was kind of a weird game. It seemed slow and boring in a lot of ways,” Keith said.

The Senators had back-to-back power plays late in the second as Marian Hossa was called for holding just eight seconds after Marcus Kruger finished serving his interference penalty.Ottawa had two shots on each of those power plays with no luck. Cody Ceci had no luck either as he was staring at a wide-open net from the face-off circle but the puck jumped over his stick.

NOTES—Jyrki Jokipakka, Christopher DiDomenico, Mark Stone, Mark Borowiecki and Craig Anderson were scratches for the Senators. … Michal Kempny, Tomas Jurco, Artem Anisimov, Michal Rozsival and Dennis Rasmussen sat out for the Blackhawks. … Hossa played his 1,300th game…..The Blackhawks are at Toronto on Saturday night.