Bulls News: Zach LaVine is back, playoffs now within striking distance

Dalen Terry, Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images,)
Dalen Terry, Zach LaVine, Chicago Bulls (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images,) /

Don’t look now, but Zach LaVine is performing at an All-Star level once again. After scoring 43 points on 15-for-20 shooting, LaVine led the Chicago Bulls to a much-needed win against the Detroit Pistons and proved many of his critics wrong in the process.

Now that he’s had time to recuperate from his injury and shake the rust off, LaVine has once again looked the part of one of the NBA’s best shooting guards. It’s been far too long since we’ve seen Zach absolutely take a game over like this, as the last time he scored 43 points or more in a game was on April 9, 2021, in his 50-point masterpiece against the Hawks.

It should come as no surprise that the Bulls are clicking as a unit now that LaVine is firing on all cylinders. If Chicago can parlay their recent success over this six-game stretch into their upcoming games against Cleveland, Brooklyn, and Philadelphia, other teams will be forced to start taking the Bulls seriously in the East once again.

More Chicago Bulls news

  • With this most recent win over the Pistons, the Bulls are now on an incredible 12-game win streak against their Central Division rival. This streak dates all the way back to 2019 when players like Jabari Parker and Cameron Payne still played for the team. Their next longest active inter-divisional win streak is against the Indiana Pacers and currently stands at 4 games.
  • The Bulls’ recent performance has seen them jump right back into the 10th-seeded position, which means the play-in tournament is now something we have to start taking seriously. Although the Bulls have never participated in the play-in, they’d find some familiar faces there if it began today. Former Bulls Jimmy Butler, Derrick Rose, and Justin Holiday each play for the current 7th, 8th, and 9th-seeded teams respectively, meaning we could see a postseason reunion as soon as this summer.
  • Among the most reassuring Bulls statistics circulating social media right now has to be their record in the clutch. After a miserable 0-7 start in close games, Chicago seems to have found its footing with an impressive 7-4 record in their last 11 closely contested games.

Around the NBA

  • While the Bulls have found their luck take a turn for the better as of late, they’re not alone in their climb up the standings. The Brooklyn Nets have now won 10 straight games and look the part of a true contender, currently tied with Milwaukee for the second seed in the East. Meanwhile, the Knicks have now lost five straight, the Cavaliers have lost three straight, and the Raptors have lost 8 of their last 11 games. Now is the time for Chicago to pounce on this opportunity to pass the competition up.
  • Moving on to the Western Conference, Dallas’ Luka Doncic has made NBA history with an unbelievable 60-point, 21-rebound, 10-assist triple-double performance. He followed this up with 35 points, 13 assists, and 12 rebounds against the Rockets. Winners of five-straight, Luka is now making a serious case for MVP honors, with even Chicago’s own taking notice of his excellence.

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