The Chicago Bulls improved their standing to 2-2 in their last four games, with losses to the Oklahoma City Thunder and New York Knicks to close out the month of February. Although they suffered these two losses, they recently finished with impressive wins against the Washington Wizards and Dallas Mavericks.
Bulls vs. Oklahoma City Thunder
The Bulls first loss toward the end of last month came against one of the NBA Western Conference’s best teams—the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Bulls fell to the Thunder 124-122 on Tuesday, February 25, at the United Center.
They were led by the superb play of guards Zach LaVine and Coby White, who together scored 76 of the Bulls 122 points. “It’s a lot of hard work paying off I guess,” said White, after making NBA history. “I’ve been working hard my whole life.”
White made history as a rookie reserve by scoring a record three, consecutive 30-point games—first against the Phoenix Suns on Saturday, February 22 (33 points), then against the Washington Wizards on Sunday, February 23 (33 points), and next against the Oklahoma City Thunder (35 points), on Tuesday, February, 25.
Michael Jordan is the only other rookie in Bulls history to have back-to-back, 30-point games in a season.
Unfortunately, White’s 35 and LaVine’s 41 points were not enough to stop the Thunder.
Final Score: Thunder 124, Bulls 122.
Bulls vs. the Knicks at MSG
The Bulls closed out February with a 125-115 loss to the New York Knicks, in spite of 26 points from star guard Zach LaVine.
The Knicks dominated the Bulls in the low post by scoring 76 points in the paint and out rebounding their team 50-33 on the boards.
Knicks forward Mitchell Robinson finished with a career-high 23 points and 10 rebounds.
During the final seconds of the fourth quarter, with the Knicks leading 123-115, Robinson jumped over several Bulls defenders for an offensive rebound, which helped to seal the Knicks18th win of the season.
Final Score: Knicks 125, Bulls 115.
The Bulls kicked off March with an impressive win
Following back-to-back losses to OKC and the Knicks, the Bulls earned two impressive victories over the Washington Wizards (2/23) and Dallas Mavericks (3/2).
In the game against the Wizards, Bulls rookie Coby White scored his second straight 33-point game, which caused the Wizards to lose by nine points to the Bulls in Washington.
Final score: Bulls 126, Wizards 117.
The Chicago Bulls prevailed over the Dallas Mavericks 109-107 at the United Center on Tuesday, March 2, which sealed their 21st win of the season.
Bulls guard Zach LaVine missed Monday’s game due to an injury, which left plenty of room for rookie Coby White and forward Otto Porter Jr., to carry the scoring load.
White, a reserve off the bench, scored a team-high 19 points while recording his 37th double-digit scoring game of the season. He also added a team-high five assists for the game.
Porter gave Bulls fans exactly what they’ve been waiting for after missing several months, due to an injury he suffered in November against the Atlanta Hawks. Porter provided an instant spark off the bench as he lit the Mavericks up for 18 points in 17 minutes of play.
Porter also went 3 of 5 from beyond the arc on 7 of 11 from the field.
With LaVine out of the starting line up, forward Denzel Valentine got his first start of the season and scored 17 points in 21 minutes of play for the Bulls.
Thirteen of his points came in the second quarter.
The Bulls used a 33-17, third-quarter run to overcome a 58-48 Mavericks half-time lead.
And with 2 seconds remaining in the game, the Bulls defense was able to stop a half-court step back, three-point attempt by Mavericks star guard Luka Doncic as time expired.
If Doncic had scored, it would have given the Mavericks a 110-109 victory over the Bulls. Instead, the Bulls delivered the Mavericks their 25th loss of the season.
Final score: Bulls 109, Mavericks 107.
Chicago Crusader Players of the Game:
Bulls vs. Thunder
Zach LaVine, Bulls, 41 points.
Coby White, Bulls, 35 points.
Bulls vs. Knicks
Zach LaVine, Bulls, 26 points.
Mitchell Robinson, Knicks, career-high 23 points.
Bulls vs. Wizards
Bradley Beal, Wizards, career-high 53 points.
Coby White, Bulls, 33 points (First rookie reserve in NBA History with back-to-back 33 point games).
Bulls vs. Mavericks
Coby White, Bulls, 19 points.
Tim Hardaway Jr., Mavericks, 26 points.
Luka Doncic, Mavericks, 23 points.
Joseph Phillips is the Sports Editor for the Chicago Crusader Newspaper. He is a Chicago native, who has been a sports writer for over 17 years. He also hosts the SC Media News and Sports Network Q&A radio show on WHPK 88.5 FM Chicago. He can be reached at [email protected].
Joseph Phillips is the Sports Editor for the Chicago Crusader Newspaper. He is a Chicago native, who has been a sports writer for over 17 years. He also hosts the SC Media News and Sports Network Q&A radio show on WHPK 88.5 FM Chicago.