NBA: DeRozan fires jets in fourth quarter to help Bulls beat Spurs
LOS ANGELES (AFP) – DeMar DeRozan caught fire in the final quarter, using a calculated game plan to score a team-high 40 points as the Chicago Bulls took control late to beat the San Antonio Spurs 120-109 in the National Basketball Association (NBA) clash on Monday (February 14).
The Bulls trailed by six points early in the fourth quarter, but DeRozan then broke away, scoring 11 of his team’s next 13 points to give Chicago the lead.
DeRozan said he tried to stay calm throughout, especially in the third quarter when the Spurs beat the Bulls 32-24.
“In the fourth quarter, my main priority was to win at all costs,” DeRozan said.
“You have to understand the whole game. It’s hard to get out of the middle ball and just be aggressive and try to score.
“You have to dissect the game. I collected data throughout the game and by the fourth quarter I had it all figured out and the ball was going into the hoop.”
DeRozan scored 30 or more points in seven straight games and set a club record with his sixth consecutive game of at least 35 points, passing Michael Jordan in the 1996-97 season.
It’s no surprise that DeRozan leads the league with 431 points in the fourth quarter.
“It’s not just the score, which is absolutely amazing what he’s doing, the other element is just his basketball IQ, his experience, how savvy he is,” the coach said. Bulls Billy Donovan.
Nikola Vucevic added 25 points and 16 rebounds, while Coby White scored 24 and Ayo Dosunmu dropped 12 in the victory.
Chicago shot 52.3% from the floor and edged Spurs 53-33.
Lonnie Walker led San Antonio with 21 points off the bench. Doug McDermott and Dejounte Murray added 19 each, and Keldon Johnson and Jakob Poeltl scored 13 each for Spurs in front of a crowd of 21,100 at the United Center.
The Bulls played without star player Zach LaVine, who missed his second straight game with left knee pain.
Elsewhere, Kyle Kuzma finished with 23 points, including 17 in the third quarter, as the Washington Wizards earned a 103-94 NBA win over the Detroit Pistons, who lost their eighth straight game.