We may be only a little over one month away from the end of the season, but the Chicago Bulls are still finding impressive ways to lose basketball games.
In this afternoon’s contest, for example, the Bulls forced a season-high 28 turnovers yet still walked out of Barclay’s Center with a 110-107 loss to the Brooklyn Nets.
The Nets (29-6 turnovers) are the first team to win a game despite committing 20 or more turnovers than their opponent since Atlanta against Seattle in 2002.
— Jeff Mangurten (@JeffGurt) March 8, 2020
… At least they technically posted a better effort than their past two games on both ends of the court? Silver linings?
Lauri Markkanen had an improved performance with 16 points, shooting 4-5 from downtown (though that didn’t much help his season reputation of becoming a seven-foot spot-up shooter).
Meanwhile, Otto Porter had an extremely solid outing, equipped with late-game heroics.
When the final buzzer sounded, Porter finished with 23 points in his 25 minutes of action off the bench.
Ahead of the contest, I was a bit bummed to see him out of the starting lineup once again – especially with the bench recently carrying the bulk of the scoring effort (it would seem to make sense to throw him back in there for an extra boost at the start of the game). However, according to Porter, this was all part of the plan.
Otto Porter Jr. said he's fine with bench role for now: "Right now, I know that I need this because I’m trying to work my way back. I’m not trying to jump the gun and just go full all out. This is all planned for my comeback."
— K.C. Johnson (@KCJHoop) March 8, 2020
Even though the Bulls lost, Coby White continues to play like a winner. With 21 points tonight, he’s now scored 20+ points in seven of the last eight games. The rookie also added 6 rebounds and 8 assists to the stat sheet, a performance that should serve as a clear reminder that it’s time to give him a shot in the starting lineup.
As long as we see some of this progress from the Bulls core players continue, the end of this season may not be completely worthless.
More tomorrow! Enjoy the weekend!