Jimmy Butler Breaks Michael Jordan's Bulls Franchise Record for Points in a Half

Mike NorrisFeatured ColumnistJanuary 3, 2016

Jan 3, 2016; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Raptors guard Cory Joseph (6) defends against Chicago Bulls guard Jimmy Butler (21) during the first half at the Air Canada Centre. Mandatory Credit: John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports
John E. Sokolowski-USA TODAY Sports

Chicago Bulls guard Jimmy Butler set a franchise record Sunday with 40 points in the second half of a 115-113 victory over the Toronto Raptors, per Nick Friedell of ESPNChicago.com.

The previous record of 39 was set by none other than Michael Jordan, and Bleacher Report shared this graphic depicting the two Bulls stars:

Butler, who was averaging 21.1 points per game heading into the contest, finished with 42 points, five assists and four rebounds.

His amazing second half not only gave him the record, but it helped Chicago overcome a 12-point halftime deficit. His free throw with four seconds remaining pushed the lead to two, before Toronto's DeMar DeRozan missed a three-point attempt at the buzzer.

Twenty-five seconds earlier, Butler nailed this three-point shot that turned a two-point deficit into a 112-111 lead that Chicago did not relinquish:

As K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune noted, the 26-year-old guard's night mirrored Jordan's franchise-record performance:  

One of Butler's teammates, Taj Gibson, was impressed with the performance, per Johnson:

Butler, who's in his fifth year in the league—all with Chicago—has started all 164 games he's played for the Bulls the past two-plus seasons. He also has increased his scoring average every year he's been in the league.

Butler and the Bulls improved to 20-12 after their fourth win in a row.