MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Jimmy Butler made a surprise return to the starting lineup and hit two free throws with 0.2 seconds left to help the Chicago Bulls weather another absence from star guard Derrick Rose in a 106-105 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Saturday night.
Butler scored 24 points on 6-for-12 shooting in his season debut and Pau Gasol added 29 points and six rebounds for the Bulls, who missed Rose with a sprained left ankle.
Kevin Martin scored 33 points and hit a 3-pointer for a 105-104 lead with 2.9 seconds to play. But Butler got rookie Andrew Wiggins in the air on the other end and forced contact to get to the line. He calmly knocked down the free throws, and the Bulls escaped with the win.
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