Bulls

Bulls Talk Podcast: What does LeBron James have to do to pass Michael Jordan?

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Bulls Talk Podcast: What does LeBron James have to do to pass Michael Jordan?

On the May 31, 2017 edition of the Bulls Talk Podcast, Mark Schanowski, Kendall Gill and Kevin Anderson preview the NBA finals. The trio discusses what both the Cavs and Warriors have to focus on from an X’s and O’s standpoint, plus the X-factor for each team in the series.

They’ll also go over the Jordan vs. LeBron debate and if there is anything LeBron can do to pass MJ as GOAT. Plus possible trade scenarios for the Bulls and why the Celtics are unlikely to trade for Jimmy Butler.

Check out the latest Bulls Talk Podcast here:

Coby White helps power Bulls past Knicks with scoring barrage for ages

Coby White helps power Bulls past Knicks with scoring barrage for ages

When North Carolina coach Roy Williams talked to Coby White pregame Tuesday, he sensed his former player was a bit down.

“I just told him to relax,” Williams said. “How many years is a talent like that going to play? A decade? Ten games doesn’t define him.”

White’s 11th NBA game, however, will live forever in his and Williams’ hearts.

White authored a shooting performance for the ages, sinking seven 3-pointers in the fourth quarter of the Bulls’ much-needed 120-102 victory over the Knicks and scoring 23 of his game-high 27 points in the final period.

The Bulls and Knicks entered the fourth quarter tied. White became the youngest player in NBA history to make seven 3-pointers, set a franchise record for 3-pointers in a quarter and tied the franchise mark for 3-pointers in a half. He fell two 3-pointers shy of Klay Thompson’s NBA record for 3-pointers in a quarter.

And Williams, who joined the standing ovation and chants of “Coby! Coby!” that boomed throughout the United Center, soaked it all in.

“It was a blessing to have him come all the way out here during his season. That explains the type of relationship you have when you go to North Carolina,” White said. “Our relationship goes beyond basketball. I love him.”

A touching moment played out on the game broadcast as Williams crashed White’s postgame on-court interview to hug him. Asked by NBC Sports Chicago’s Leila Rahimi what he would say to Williams, White smiled.

“Coach, can you come to more games?” the rookie said.

Alas, Williams can’t. He’s a little busy coaching North Carolina.

But perhaps White’s magic can carry over and help extract him from a slump that produced 3-for-26 shooting from 3-point range over his previous five games. White sank 7 of 11 from beyond the arc overall against the Knicks, scoring 18 points in the game-changing 22-0 run. At one point, White sank three 3-pointers in 54 seconds.

“I told him, ‘I’ve had 20-point quarters and I’ve seen duels with big players. I’ve never seen somebody hit seven 3s in a quarter,’” Zach LaVine said. “I’ve been telling you guys from the get-go. Coby is special. He can score the ball. He got hot. I don’t know how many he had going into the 4th. But it seemed like he had 30 in the fourth. That was as impressive as any of the (fourth quarters) I’ve ever seen.”

This is the second time this season White has taken over a fourth quarter. He scored 11 fourth-quarter points in the road victory over Memphis.

“I thought the beauty in Coby’s game was he let it come to him,” coach Jim Boylen said. “But we found him and we honored what he was doing by keep feeding him. That group did a helluva job.”

Indeed, Ryan Arcidiacono finished with eight assists and one turnover and Kris Dunn posted 13 points with three steals as the oft maligned three-guard lineup came through. White’s performance just screamed the loudest.

“He’s a gamer and he’s a worker,” Boylen said. “It bothers him when he doesn’t play as well as he thinks he could play. He cares.”

That’s evident in White’s off-day routine, which hasn’t changed whether he’s playing well or not.

“Just stick to my craft and what got me here, which is working hard and getting up reps in the gym,” White said. “I know to shoot your way out of a slump, you gotta shoot the ball and stay confident. If you’re not confident, you’re never going to hit shots. I just try to stick to my plan. Get in the gym, get up extra shots and stay level-headed and confident.”

White said Williams told him “to be Coby and use a little more legs on my shot.” And as for where this scoring barrage ranked for the most prolific scorer in North Carolina high school history?

“That’s No. 1,” White said.

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 shotchart.

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."

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