Bulls-Cavs: Five Takeaways From Thrilling Opening Night Victory

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Oct 6, 2015; Chicago, IL, USA; Chicago Bulls forward Nikola Mirotic (44) before the game against the Milwaukee Bucks at United Center. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

5. Nikola Mirotic is going to be an issue for teams this season

One of the players around the NBA that’s expected to some sort of leap this season is Nikola Mirotic. The sophomore campaign for Mirotic got off to a fantastic start on Tuesday.

Mirotic scored a team-high 19 points on 6-of-11 shooting, including a 3-for-4 night from beyond the arc. The second-year man out of Montenegro utilized his ever-popular pump fakes, but the biggest takeaway other than his offensive output was his defensive effort. He’s not a complete liability defensively, but it’s going to take some time. On Tuesday night, you could really see the effort that Mirotic was giving on that end of the floor.

Offensively, Mirotic was money. The biggest bucket from Mirotic on Tuesday came with Cleveland leading 83-82 with just over five minutes in the game. Mirotic pumped on the left wing, drove baseline, and hit a tough floater (plus the foul) to give the Bulls the lead.

It’s not a bad thing when your prized second-year four-man drives and scores on an $82 million man late in the ballgame.

Next: Bulls in Season Openers Since 2010-11 Season

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