The Bulls came into the season opener after dominating the preseason, going undefeated in the four games they played. But as we know, it’s not all sunshine and rainbows in the NBA as every game is going to be a battle– especially with all the new pieces they added this offseason.
On paper, the Bulls looked to have a clear advantage on the court. The only key player missing from the Bulls was Coby White. Meanwhile, the Pistons were without the 2021 number one overall pick in Cade Cunningham due to a sprained ankle.
There was a sluggish start from both teams scoring a combined 34 points in the first quarter. You can contribute that to first game jitters as the Bulls started playing with much better pace in the second half.
The Chicago Bulls won despite a Jekyll and Hyde performance.
Zach LaVine led the Bulls in scoring by pouring in 34 points on 11/17 from the field. LaVine put the finishing touches on the game by scoring 15 of his 34 points in the 4th quarter.
It was clear that this is still LaVine’s team throughout the game. He took over when needed to keep them in the game and had the ball in his hands when it mattered most. LaVine went 6/6 from the free throw line in the 4th quarter and 11/11 for the game.
DeMar DeRozen chipped in with 17 points and Lonzo Ball had 12 points and four assists in their much anticipated debuts. Nikola Vucevic also played a big part scoring 15 points and grabbing 15 rebounds.
It was a total team effort on both sides of the ball but the consistency wasn’t there. The first half was sloppy and you cannot start that way against good teams. Yes, LaVine was able to bail the Bulls out tonight, but that will not always be the case game to game.
Up Next, the Bulls come home to take on the New Orleans Pelicans. Without Zion Williamson, the Bulls will again have the advantage on paper looking to start the season 2-0.