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Chicago Bulls lose in a game they should’ve won, 24-point lead blown

Chicago BullsIt is common for a team or athlete to gain the lead in sports before being passed by and failing.

The Chicago Bulls had a chance to defeat the Indiana Pacers on Wednesday, but they blew it and lost.

Lost composure

The Chicago Bulls failed to retain control for the fifth straight game, losing to the Pacers 117-113 after blowing a 24-point advantage.

The Bulls’ loss of composure, according to coach Billy Donovan, is what prevented them from winning a game they should have dominated.

By making 15 3-pointers, the team overcame their previous long-range shooting slump.

Despite playing without DeMar DeRozan, Zach LaVine put on an outstanding effort; he ended the game with 35 points, 11 rebounds, and seven assists.

It wasn’t enough, though, to give the Bulls a victory.

Donovan answered when asked about the Chicago Bulls’ carelessness in the last quarter: “That was it.”

“Just being settled, being able to make the right passes, the right plays, really on both ends of the floor,” he added.

“I thought there were a lot of things we did where giving up two points turns into, like, eight.”

“But I do think the poise and the composure and just being able to pass it where it needs to go, to screen to catch.”

“This has happened to a lot of us,” the Bulls coach continued.

“We compete pretty hard but the game gets ratchet up physically, mentally, emotionally. And you have to be able to come down on both ends and be detailed and focused and execute.”

“You have to talk and communicate on defense. And then you have to be able to get into offense and generate as good of shots as you can.”

A string of bad luck

The second-largest lead that was blown in the NBA season occurred during the Chicago Bulls vs. Indiana Pacers game.

The Chicago Bulls have already dropped five games this season despite being up by 16 points.

Only three weeks earlier, the Bulls had lost their inaugural game, which was played in the same Gainbridge Fieldhouse, after blowing a 21-point lead.

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Moreover, despite holding leads of 19 and 16 points, respectively, the Bulls dropped games against the Los Angeles Clippers and the Washington Wizards at home.

“I don’t want to use the word trend,” said Donovan.

“But what I would say is it’s something this group has to overcome. It’s an obstacle in front of us.”

The Pacers game

Despite losing, the Chicago Bulls had a tremendous start.

Coby White made one of five 3-point attempts made during the game, and they were successful, giving them a 24-point lead before the first quarter was done.

White has already tallied a season-high 25 points this year.

When the shot clock was introduced in 1954–1955, only three teams had overcome a bigger first-quarter deficit, according to ESPN Stats & Info.

Since 2008, no other squad has accomplished a feat like this.

“The intensity level continues to go up, and we’ve gotta be able to play all the way through,” said the Bulls coach.

“It’s the poise, the composure, understanding time and score.”

The Chicago Bulls let up 75 points in the second half of the game after establishing a sizable lead in the first.

“A lot of 3s they made in the second half, you gotta understand the personnel,” Donovan explained.

“Not to show any disrespect to anybody on their team, but you don’t want to be leaving Buddy Hield to rotate to somebody that’s not Buddy Hield.”

“Those things we have to, in the moment, be able to make better decisions and quicker decisions.”

After that, Hield made six of the Indiana Pacers’ 18 attempts from beyond the line.

Postgame sentiments

Billy Donovan said that the Chicago Bulls ought to have supported Nikola Vucevic after the defeat since he was regularly paired with the tyrannical Aaron Nesmith.

Donovan recognized that he did bear some accountability, however.

“I gotta try to help them more,” said Donovan. “You try to talk about things, show things (on film).”

“We’re all in it together. And when we’re coming down the stretch, we have to be able to execute.”

LaVine had comparable responses as the Chicago Bulls dropped yet another setback to prolong their losing run.

“We talk about it. We’ve been here before,” said LaVine.

“Try to sustain it. Change the momentum a little bit. We gave ourselves a chance but a little too short.”

Image source: Blog a Bull

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