Kris Dunn joins Kirk Hinrich, Michael Jordan and other great Bulls with 17-assist masterpiece


Kris Dunn joins Kirk Hinrich, Michael Jordan and other great Bulls with 17-assist masterpiece

Kris Dunn turned in one of the more complete performances of his career in Friday night’s loss to the Pacers. He racked up 17 assists, joining some great names in Bulls history.

Dunn became one of nine players in Bulls’ history to finish a game with at least 17 assists in a game.

The other eight players in Bulls history who have racked up at least 17 assists in a game are:

Guy Rodgers, Clem Haskins, Norm Van Lier, Ennis Whatley, Sam Vincent, Michael Jordan, Kirk Hinrich and most recently (via our Chris Kamka) before Dunn, Derrick Rose.

Out of the nine players in Bulls history to get at least 17 assists in a game, Dunn actually tied Whatley for the highest field goal percentage of the bunch at 66.7 percent on 6-for-9 shooting from the field. This is yet another figure that shows just how well Dunn was controlling the flow of the offense on Friday night.

And in a more specific measure, Dunn also became only the second player in Bulls franchise history to net 17 assists and at least two made 3-pointers in a game. This one was huge for Dunn, as it represented the first time he hit multiple 3-pointers in a game this season.

Dunn has been slowly but surely improving, and as of now he is playing a role this team desperately needs. His defense has always been good--foul issues notwithstanding--but it is well documented that if he can improve his 3-point shooting accuracy, his ceiling becomes very, very different.

So while the 17 assists are awesome to see, the 3-point makes were nice too. This season, Dunn is shooting a sizzling-hot 50 percent on corner 3-point shots, and 35 percent on all 3-point shots. Last season Dunn shot 38 percent on corner 3s and 32 percent from the 3-point line. So if he has improved again as a shooter, somewhere around the 34-to-35 percent mark from 3-point range would be about right, even if it comes on a much lower volume.

Much like Russell Westbrook--the former MVP and 7-time All-NBA team member--, Dunn received much doubt over whether he could develop into a quality NBA point guard because of his lack of a jump shot. But also similar to “The Brodie”, Dunn  has flashed the ability to have a huge impact on games even if his shot isn’t falling.

Dunn’s 17 assist game may be remembered down the line as a nice little reward for Bulls fans among a tough season, or it may fall by the wayside like the not widely discussed or remembered Sam Vincent 17-assist game from 1988.

But if the development of the young Bulls’ core goes as well as John Paxson and co. expect, this game may well go down as the exact moment when the Bulls’ “Big 3” finally clicked.

Monte Harrison, brother to Bulls' Shaq, makes sibling sports history

Monte Harrison, brother to Bulls' Shaq, makes sibling sports history

Miami Marlins center fielder Monte Harrison made a bit of history on Aug. 4, when he laced up for his first ever MLB game.

With his debut, he and older brother Shaq officially became just the sixth MLB-NBA brother duo in league history. The most recent? Klay and Trayce Thompson, the latter of which appeared in his last MLB game on June 20, 2018 for the White Sox. Chicago ties all around.

Click to download the MyTeams App for the latest Bulls news and analysis.

Shaq used his trademark brand of heart and hustle to work his way up from two 10-day contracts with the Phoenix Suns to a multi-year pact with the Bulls. Monte's path to the majors began in 2014 after the Milwaukee Brewers plucked him in the second round of the Amateur Draft from Lee's Summit West High School in Lee's Summit, Mo. He was jettisoned to Miami as part of the Christian Yelich trade in 2018. 

In 2019, Monte played 58 games between Miami's Class A and AAA affiliates, slashing .270/.351/.441 with 9 home runs, 24 RBI and 23 stolen bases. He's been known to flash some leather, too, and entered this season the club's tenth-ranked prospect.

Since his call-up, he's appeared in four contests (three starts) with the Marlins, and is just 1-for-10 at the plate with five strikeouts. But we'll forgive some early-career stumbles. His first big-league base-knock, which came on Thursday, was perfectly emblematic of what Bulls fans have come to expect from the Harrison household.

Yup. A cue-shot infield single. Exit velocity: 44.3 mph. Expected batting average: .190. But he beat it out. And followed it up with a stolen base. You can't script this stuff.

"I don’t know what my mother did, a lot of prayers, a lot of believing, and trust in us," Monte said after his debut on Tuesday, via Bob Nightengale. "We just worked our ass off.''

That much is evident.

RELATED: How Bulls’ Shaq Harrison impacts games, even with limited playing time


Latest on the NBA's second bubble for teams eliminated from restart

Latest on the NBA's second bubble for teams eliminated from restart

With the NBA restarting with 22 of its 30 teams, there was buzz in early July of a second bubble coming to Chicago for the eight teams excluded to get in organized team activities and possibly scrimmages.

Now, it appears those talks have significantly slowed, if not stalled entirely.

The Athletic reported Tuesday that there is "significant doubt" the second bubble concept will come to fruition, but Friday, that bringing the "Delete Eight" teams into the Disney campus has been discussed. Any agreement — whether it be a full-on bubble or respective, in-market OTAs — would require stringent safety protocols and need to be agreed upon by the league and NBPA.

On the most recent episode of the Bulls Talk Podcast, NBC Sports Chicago Bulls insider K.C. Johnson broke down the latest scuttlebut:

Well, the latest is, you really got only one shared goal between these eight teams and that is to get some kind of formal group activities authorized by the league and the players association.

How that plays out and the form that takes, there are different goals. There are some teams that wouldn't mind doing a bubble. There are other teams that would rather stay in their own practice facilities and not travel. There are other teams that want to do regional scrimmages against another team. And complicating this is that Michele Roberts, the executive director of the players association, is on record as saying: Unless there are the exact same safety protocols going on in Orlando for the second bubble, it's a non-starter for her.

The league's attention mostly has been in Orlando, obviously, and that was a signficant financial undertaking. So you'd also have to factor in that, what kind of financial undertaking would they commit to these eight teams. It did look like there was some positive momentum for, not a bubble, but for each team to be able to hold some sort of offseason training sessions, group sessions in their own facilities, like OTAs in the NFL.

And I don't think that's dead, but there's certainly not as much optimism as there was maybe a week, ten days ago for that. I mean, it's fluid, and there's nothing definitive yet, but you may be staring at that dreaded eight month window between formal group activities for these eight teams. 

In the episode, the crew also breaks down the week in NBA bubble action, talks Jim Boylen and more. Listen here or via the embedded player below: