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Nikola Mirotic

With Obama watching, Bulls hold off Cavaliers 97-95

For all the talk about their fast-paced offense, defense once again lifted the Chicago Bulls in their season opener.

Pau Gasol's block of LeBron James and a pass deflection in the closing seconds helped preserve the win for new coach Fred Hoiberg. And that had to please the president.

Nikola Mirotic scored 19 points and Derrick Rose added 18 to lead the Bulls to a 97-95 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers with President Barack Obama watching on Tuesday night.

After Gasol blocked James' potential tying layup in the closing seconds, Jimmy Butler then broke up an inbounds pass intended for James as time expired.

Obama sat courtside for most of the game as his...