Bulls

3 observations from the Bulls' convincing win over the Knicks

3 observations from the Bulls' convincing win over the Knicks

The Bulls record is now 4-7 with their 120-102 win Tuesday night at the United Center. Here are three observations:

The lid was finally lifted off the basket from 3-point range and 'The Coby White Game' had A LOT to do with it

The Bulls finally had a great 3-point shooting game and their 2019 No. 7 overall draft pick had a lot to do with it in perhaps his most impressive game as a pro.

Coby White helped spark a 22-0 Bulls run that effectively put the game away. Below is White's 4th quarter shot chart.

White came into Tuesday's game shooting 21.2% from the 3-point line and started to right the ship in a big way. He shot 0-2 from the field in the first half and then exploded in the second half, scoring 23 of his 27 points in the 4th quarter alone. He went 7-for-11 on 3-pointers against the Knicks, converting on both spot-ups and his signature step-back 3s.

Boylen said postgame "Coby was terrific and we kept feeding him.

"It bothers him when he doesn't play as well as he thinks he can play...I'm just really happy for him. I'm happy that Roy [Williams] was here tonight to see it."

Overall he Bulls went 14-for-33 (42.4%) from 3-point range, backing up the idea that the Bulls offense will be quite formidable once their shooters start to trend closer to their career averages.

Wendell Carter Jr. continues to show incredibly impressive leadership (for a 20-year old) on an off the court

Coming into Tuesday's game, Wendell Carter Jr. talked at length about Bobb Portis' big game against the Bulls earlier in the season at Madison Square Garden, in which he had 28 points and 11 rebounds in 30 minutes. Carter stated, "No words need to be said, we're not letting that happen...I'm not gonna have it." This is yet another example of Carter talking like a leader but what really makes him such a strong candidate to be a leader on this Bulls squad for a long time to come is the way he backs up his words. 

In the first half Portis—while hardly his team's biggest problem—scored 2 points on 1/4 from the field and was a -7. Portis finished the game with 7 points on 3-for-9 shooting. Postgame Carter was all smiles when asked about the Bulls holding Portis down in the rematch.

"We still boys but both of us competitive...after the game we back to being homies."

On offense, Carter continued to show off an improved offensive game.

In the first quarter specifically, the Bulls threw Carter (and Markkanen) the ball in the post early and often and the results were encouraging. Carter tallied 8 points in the opening frame and was a big reason the Bulls jumped out an early lead. 

He scored 17 points on 7-for-11 shooting and showed off some solid passing from the post despite not racking up any assists. Most of the basketball world has caught on to the fact that Carter is a great defender but eyes are slowly being opened to the young big man's burgeoning offensive game. 

Carter talked to Boylen recently about having so few plays called for him, and though he is still not a focal point of the offense, things seem to be trending in a positive direction. Carter developing into a two-way force would be a welcome development amid a season with many more losses (so far) than expected. 

Kris Dunn may have finally turned a corner 

Kris Dunn has had an awesome season so far while settling into his off the bench role. He was third in the league in steals per game coming into Tuesday night's game and he racked up another 3 steals in the Bulls win. While the defense looks awesome, the more shocking development was his offensive contributions.

Dunn scored 13 points in 19 minutes, going 5-for-6 from the field, 2-for-2 from the free throw line and hitting 1 of his 2 attempts from 3-point range. 

It isn't often that we are going to see Dunn only miss one shot in a game, but as long as he continues to show aggressiveness driving to the basket, he will continue to serve an important role on a team that—albeit against a bad Knicks team—looked like they were finally starting to come together. 

Boylen was very happy with Dunn's performance, stating "he just wants to win, he wants to play winning basketball...he is locked in, he cares, he's always cared and he's playing winning basketball, I'm really happy for him."

Attention Dish and Sling customers! You have lost your Bulls games on NBC Sports Chicago. To switch providers, visit mysportschicago.com

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Bulls easily on your device.

Bulls' guard Tomas Satoransky and his never-ending pursuit of perfection

Bulls' guard Tomas Satoransky and his never-ending pursuit of perfection

Tomas Satoransky is a perfectionist and a pleaser.

This can be a positive thing. It also can be negative.

“Everyone who is close to me will tell you that I’m hardest on myself. I always expect to play the best,” Satoransky said in an interview. “I always expect to be perfect, which isn’t always the best but in the long term it has always worked out for me.”

That’s because perfection is an unattainable quest. But Satoransky keeps working towards the unachievable goal. So he’s driven, which is good, but sometimes self-destructive, which isn’t.

Early on, as Satoransky slowly adjusted to a new city, new coach, new teammates and new system, the process didn’t go smoothly.

“I didn’t feel down. I felt frustrated and anxious to do better, anxious to help the team as much as he can,” coach Jim Boylen said when asked if he sensed frustration from Satoransky. “He really struggles when he lets the team down. That’s just basketball. You’re not going to play perfect all the time. He takes it to heart. I’ve spoken to him about it. I don’t need him to beat himself up. Just continue to grow and learn how we’re going to play and get used to guys. It does take some time to get a feel for each other.”

And it’s happening. Satoransky has posted nine straight games with at least five assists, the second-longest stretch of his young career. Coincidentally, his assist totals began to rise the more he looked for his shot.

“I think there’s a point where you make other people better, which he tries to do, and a point where you have to play your game. I think he’s starting to figure that out,” Boylen said. “I think he’s starting to understand where his spots are and how he makes people better but also doesn’t lose the positive things he can do individually.”

The selflessness of Satoransky is something that gets mentioned often by others when they’re asked about him. He’s someone who takes the time to read a situation before asserting himself, always trying to make the right play.

This dynamic was exacerbated by Satoransky not only joining a new team but doing so after playing a leading role for his Czech Republic national team at the FIBA World Cup this offseason.

“I think I’m very adaptable. But I won’t aggressively adapt. I’ll try to see what it is---new coaches, new offense---before asserting myself,” Satoransky said. “I knew I had to be patient, especially with a new team, new role. I’m also coming from a very different situation in the World Cup. And I’m trying to fit in and make my teammates feel the best and most comfortable around me. But I’m trying to be more aggressive because it opens up more space.

“I feel we’re more and more on the same page now.”

Satoransky’s averages of 9.6 points, 5.3 assists and 3.3 rebounds in 27.1 minutes are eerily similar to those he posted last season with the Wizards, his breakout season. In 80 games, including 54 starts for the injured John Wall, he averaged 8.9 points, 5 assists and 3.5 rebounds also in 27.1 minutes.

He’s shooting 39.7 percent on 3 3-point attempts per game---again very similar to last season’s 39.5 percent on 2 3-point attempts per game.

“I tell him he has to take his shots. He’s a threat,” Zach LaVine said. “He can shoot and create for others. Once he gets in the lane, he’s crafty. He isn’t just a spot-up 3-point shooter.”

Satoransky is in the first year of a three-year, $30 million deal that is only partially guaranteed in the final season. He said he is enjoying Chicago and playing for the Bulls.

“Everyone cares. We get along well,” Satoransky said. “This is my second NBA locker room, but I think this is one of the best groups I’ve had.”

Now, he just wants to improve the won-lost record to something closer to perfection.

Attention Dish and Sling customers! You have lost your Bulls games on NBC Sports Chicago. To switch providers, visit mysportschicago.com.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Bulls easily on your device.

Bulls Outsiders Podcast: Bulls lose to Warriors for 2nd time in 10 days

bulls_outsiders_podcast_website_listen_now.jpg
USA TODAY

Bulls Outsiders Podcast: Bulls lose to Warriors for 2nd time in 10 days

On this edition of the Bulls Outsiders podcast, Matt Peck, David Watson, and John Sabine react to the Bulls 100-98 loss to the Warriors

0:45 - Reaction to loss and Bulls losing to Warriors again

2:30 - On 4th quarter struggles

3:30 - On Zach LaVine’s game-winning shot attempt

5:20 - Viewer comments on Coby White starting

9:20 - Viewer comment on Denzel Valentine leads to Matt rant

10:20 - Viewer comment on Wendell Carter

12:10 - Viewer comment on Sato needing to be more aggressive

13:30 - Viewer comment on Luke Kornet

16:35 - Viewer comment on Denzel Valentine talking trash to Warriors

18:00 - On LaVine not being the issue

19:00 - On Otto Porter’s injury and being out indefinitely

22:10 - Viewer comment on Bulls being contenders

23:50 - Viewer comment asking why Matt is always angry

24:50 - Viewer asking Sabine how he feels about the Bears beating the Cowboys

26:20 - Which team is more likely to make playoffs, Bears or Bulls?

 Listen to the full podcast here or via the embedded player below:

Bulls Outsiders

Subscribe:

Attention Dish and Sling customers! You have lost your Bulls games on NBC Sports Chicago. To switch providers, visit mysportschicago.com.

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Bulls easily on your device.