Thu, 02 Dec 2021

Bulls outlast Pistons in DeMar DeRozan's team debut

Field Level Media
21 Oct 2021, 11:55 GMT+10

Zach LaVine had 34 points, seven rebounds and four assists and the visiting Chicago Bulls opened their season with a 94-88 victory over the Detroit Pistons on Wednesday.

Chicago has defeated its Central Division eight consecutive times. DeMar DeRozan, making his franchise debut after being acquired in a sign-and-trade from San Antonio, supplied 17 points, seven rebounds and three steals.

Nikola Vucevic added 15 points and 15 rebounds, while Lonzo Ball chipped in 12 points and four assists in his Chicago debut. Ball was acquired in a sign-and-trade with New Orleans this summer.

Jerami Grant led the Pistons with 24 points and six rebounds. Saddiq Bey had 13 points, nine rebounds and four assists and Isaiah Stewart added 12 points and eight rebounds. Detroit made just six of 28 3-point attempts and committed 16 turnovers.

Guard Cade Cunningham, the No. 1 pick of this year's draft, did not play due to an ankle sprain.

The Pistons emerged from a poor-shooting first half with a 44-40 lead. Detroit shot 36.7 percent, while Chicago made 41.9 percent of its shots. They shot a combined 5-for-23 on 3-point attempts.

Grant was the only Detroit player in double figures with 13 points. Vucevic already reached a double-double for the Bulls with 10 points and 11 rebounds.

The game remained tight throughout the third quarter. The Pistons committed three turnovers in the final minute, allowing the Bulls to pull ahead 71-69 entering the fourth. Bulls reserve guard Alex Caruso had a pair of steals and an assist during that span.

The Pistons took a 77-76 lead with 8:45 left on a Kelly Olynyk layup. Ball's corner 3 midway through the quarter gave Chicago an 84-82 edge.

DeRozan scored with three minutes left to give Chicago a four-point lead.

Grant's turnaround jumper with 1:28 remaining pulled the Pistons with two points. LaVine reached the 30-point mark on two free throws with 40.9 seconds left.

Grant then missed in the lane and LaVine knocked down two more free throws.

--Field Level Media

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