CHICAGO – Ben Gordon scored 23 points, Ben Wallace kept his headband out of sight, and the Chicago Bulls beat the New York Knicks for the second time in four nights, 102-85 on Tuesday.

Back home after going 1-6 on the annual circus road trip, the Bulls pulled away midway through the fourth quarter.

But there was a new twist in the controversy between Wallace and the team. He said Tuesday his right hand – which he injured in Saturday’s 106-95 victory at New York – has ligament damage and bone chips. A day earlier, the team said he had a sprained index finger and bruised wrist.

Wallace also expressed no regret for wearing a headband during Saturday’s game, a violation of team rules that led to him being benched. Those issues aside, Wallace grabbed 12 rebounds.

Gordon shot 8-of-18 after scoring seven on Saturday, and Chris Duhon added 18 points.

Up 82-78 midway through the fourth quarter, Duhon scored to start a 10-2 run that put away the Knicks. Kirk Hinrich drove for a layup and made two free throws that made it 92-80 with 3:19 left. P.J. Brown added two foul shots and a tip-in during that run.

Former Bull Eddy Curry led New York with 24 points.

The Knicks were missing starting forwards Channing Frye and Quentin Richardson, who were injured Saturday.

Frye is expected to miss three to six weeks with a sprained left ankle. Richardson, who was active but did not dress, is day to day with a strained left hamstring. David Lee and Renaldo Balkman started in their place and finished with 14 and six points, respectively. Lee added 11 rebounds.

Tuesday’s game was New York’s first at the United Center since January, when then-Knick Antonio Davis – a former Bull – went into the stands after he saw a fan arguing with his wife, Kendra.

But the Wallace situation overshadowed that.

AP-ES-11-28-06 2321EST


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