By Richard Kagan
Let’s face it, the Chicago Bulls are offensively challenged. Despite the Miami Heat’s woeful first quarter, in which it scored a franchise low 7 points, the Bulls ended up scoring only 13 on a poor shooting quarter, making just four of 24 shots and one of 15 long distance attempts. It isn’t pretty.
The Heat found players who could score, some off the bench, and eventually, it pulled away from a moribund offensive night, where the Bulls hit 37% of its shots in the game.
Miami won 100-93 to send the Bulls (3-15) to its fifth consecutive loss, four coming on the recent west coast trip. Well, welcome home Bulls. If the Bulls had found the nets it may have been a better night. Goran Dragic scored 24 points and Wayne Ellington had one of his better nights of the young season, adding 19 points. In the second quarter, Ellington scored 10 points with three treys to wake up the Heat. The Heat got hot and shot 68.4 % from the field in that 2nd quarter which propelled them back in the game.
Still, this game was a two point affair in the fourth quarter at 83-81. The Bulls just could not make the big basket or get a stop. When a team has trouble finding the basket, it often loses and that is again, what happened.
Jerian Grant scored 24 points and may have won back the starting spot over Kris Dunn. Dunn went 0-7 and had three turnovers. Grant went 8 for 16 and made three treys for an excellent scoring night. Chicago doesn’t have a Dragic or Stephen Curry, or Kristaps Porzingis. Heck, they don’t have Doug McDermott who has been popping them in for the Knicks.
Justin Holiday, rookie forward Lauri Markkanen, and Robin Lopez are three of the starters. NBA defenses have been adjusting and can shut these players down. Denzel Valentine had 14 points, but he is just finding his role as a starter.
Again, the Bulls await the return of Zach LaVine who had a double-digit scoring average before he got hurt last season.
The Bulls appear to be in race for the bottom, for the one of League’s worst teams, so they can qualify for a high lottery pick. They may get their pick, if they pick the right player. That sequence of events is a long way off. We’ve got a lot of games to play.