Marko Simonovic Went OFF to Give the Bulls an OT Win in First Summer League Game of 2022

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Marko Simonovic Went OFF to Give the Bulls an OT Win in First Summer League Game of 2022

Chicago Bulls

What’s my totally rational takeaway from the Bulls’ first Summer League game, you ask?

MARKO SIMONOVIC IS THE SECOND-MOST CLUTCH PLAYER IN THE NBA BEHIND DEMAR DEROZAN!

The Chicago Bulls No. 44 pick in the 2020 NBA Draft led the Summer League Bulls to an OT win over the Dallas Mavericks on Friday afternoon in Las Vegas. The big man dropped a team-high 27 points on 10-19 shooting to go along with 13 rebounds and 3 blocks.

Seven of his 27 points came in a truly clutch fashion, as Simonovic made back-to-back unanswered buckets in the final minute of regulation to force overtime.

Then, down by one with roughly 16 seconds to go in extra time, Simonovic finished an and-one dunk to give the Bulls a lead. The Mavs would go down to quickly put the score back in their favor, but Simonovic answered immediately by drawing the foul at the rim and capping things off at the free-throw line.

Look, we all know Summer League is just … well … Summer League, but to see Simonovic assert himself that strongly from the jump is undoubtedly an encouraging sign.

The big man appeared in just nine NBA games one offseason ago, as the front office chose to have him spend the majority of his time in the G-League. The 22-year-old recently credited the work he was able to put in there for helping him take his game to the next level, and I think it’s safe to say we saw him play like an improved talent this afternoon.

Again, no one is saying Simonovic is ready to take over a rotational role on this win-ready Bulls team. He isn’t. But it’s always fun to watch how a player can grow, and I’m happy Simonovic had this moment in the spotlight.

As for Bulls rookie Dalen Terry, he gave us the kind of performance we expected. The rookie came out like a fireball, blocking a 3-point shot on the defensive end and converting some flashy passes on offense. With that said, he certainly played a little too hot for his own good at times, coughing up six turnovers and struggling to finish drives to the rim.

Terry finished the day with 9 points, 6 assists, 5 rebounds, and 1 block. Hey, as far as first Summer League games go, I’ll take it.


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Author: Elias Schuster

Elias Schuster is the Lead Bulls Writer at Bleacher Nation. You can follow him on Twitter @Schuster_Elias.