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Bulls’ Total Team Effort Topples Timberwolves

A total team effort was needed for the Bulls, who dominated the fourth quarter to defeat the Minnesota Timberwolves, 134-122.

DeMar DeRozan Chicago Bulls
Photo: ChicagoBulls/Twitter

It wasn’t just the mainstays that got the job done for the Chicago Bulls on Friday night. Billy Donovan’s squad defeated the Minnesota Timberwolves 134-122 thanks to key contributions from players up and down the roster.

Yes, DeMar DeRozan did his usual thing, scoring 35 points. It was DeRozan’s fifth straight game scoring 30 or more points, tied for the longest such streak in his career.

It was also his fourth straight game scoring 35-plus points, making him just the second Bull — and the first since Michael Jordan in 1996 — to accomplish that feat.

Nikola Vucevic also played very well, adding 26 points to the Bulls’ season-high of 134 total points. But a career-high 23 points from Javonte Green should steal the headlines tonight.

Green continued his excellent first full season in a Bulls uniform as he went 10-13 from the field and 3-4 from the three-point line.

Rookie Ayo Dosunmu played a key role too. He scored 12 points and added 10 assists to collect yet another double-double.

The key contributor off the bench was Coby White. The guard shot 8-12 from the field, including a team-high six makes from beyond the arc.

Overall, the Bulls made 55 field goals on the night, a season-high.

Bulls Pull Away in the Fourth

For most of the game, both teams were neck and neck. There were actually 13 lead changes and the score was knotted up 15 different times.

Both teams shot extremely poorly from the field in the first half, especially from the three point line. Minnesota shot 3-19 (16%) in the opening 24 minutes. The Bulls did not fare much better, shooting just 5-16 (31%).

But the tide changed in the second half, as both teams produced an offensive showcase. Minnesota upped their three-point shooting to a 10-21 (48%) clip. The Bulls shot even better, going 9-15 (60%) from beyond the arc.

Chicago only took a one-point lead into the fourth quarter, but it was Coby White and the King of the Fourth himself, DeMar DeRozan, that led the way in the final frame. White scored 12 of his 22 points in the fourth, all on the three-point makes. DeRozan added 16 points, including six of the Bulls’ final eight points.

What’s On Tap Next?

The Bulls (35-21) host the contest of their second of their six-game homestand when the Oklahoma City Thunder (17-38) come to town Saturday night. The Bulls struggled to hold off the Thunder in Oklahoma back on Jan. 24 but pulled out a 111-110 victory.

It will be an extra special night as the Bulls will honor former broadcaster Neil Funk, who retired after the 2019-20 season. Funk spent a total of 29 years calling Bulls games on both the radio and TV.

Be sure to check out the Bulls On Tap podcast for further postgame reaction as well as Chicago basketball analysis and commentary all season.

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