Bulls: 3 reasons Ayo Dosunmu should start if Lonzo isn’t ready for opener

Ayo Dosunmu, Chicago Bulls (Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images)
Ayo Dosunmu, Chicago Bulls (Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images) /
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Although the Chicago Bulls certainly aren’t too pleased with the long overdue recovery process of Lonzo Ball’s meniscus tear and subsequent bone bruise, no one stands to benefit more than the guards on Chicago’s bench, particularly Ayo Dosunmu.

Considering the Bulls already gave the “Can Coby White be a point guard?” experiment substantial time to play out, the fact that Goran Dragic is too old to register 30 or more minutes a night, and that rookie Dalen Terry has a lot to learn before he’s ready for a starting role, I expect Alex Caruso to be the biggest threat to Dosunmu’s playing time moving forward.

I previously discussed the merits of Caruso potentially winning the starting role over the weekend, but I still believe that promoting Dosunmu to the starting lineup may end up being the best move the Chicago Bulls could make if Lonzo isn’t available for opening day.

Ayo Dosunmu is a strong dark horse candidate to win the Chicago Bulls’ starting point guard position if Lonzo Ball needs more time to heal up.

3. Ayo is the more reliable offensive option

Of all the guards currently on the Bulls’ bench, no player has quite the blend of offensive skills and playmaking ability like Dosunmu. Caruso may be the better playmaker in a vacuum, and White is probably a better pure scorer, but Ayo is the most well-rounded player of the bunch.

Dosunmu averaged 8.8 points per game on 52% shooting from the field last season, with those numbers bumping up to 10.9 points and 52.3% shooting in the 40 games he played as a starter. He also converted 37.6% percent of his three-point attempts last season, proving he could be an efficient option offensively alongside Chicago’s star scoring threats.

Caruso, on the other hand, averaged 7.4 points on a surprisingly terrible 39.8% shooting and 33.3% from deep. In the 18 games Caruso played with the starting lineup, those numbers got even worse. He posted 5.7 points on 31.1% from the field and 31% from beyond the arc during that stretch. This all goes to show that Dosunmu actually played better with the starters, while Caruso was more suited to a reserve role.

Regardless of who starts, the Bulls’ starting point guard is going to be primarily tasked with opening up the offense and hitting open shots while DeMar DeRozan and Zach LaVine go to work. Dosunmu shot 40.7% on corner threes last season, while Caruso hit 38.3% of his attempts from the corner (and is 34.8% from that region over the course of his career). If we’re comparing the two guards’ potential fit in the starting five, the correct choice here is clear.