Bulls’ DeMar DeRozan on Coby White’s 42-Point Night: ‘Did Alright, Could’ve Been a Little Better’

Coby White, NBA, Chicago Bulls
(Nam. Y Huh/AP)

The Chicago Bulls are advancing in the NBA play-in tournament and guard Coby White is a major reason why.

It was White, after all, who scored 42 points in Thursday’s 131-116 win over the Atlanta Hawks and played with the determination of someone who viewed every possession as if it may be his last. He attacked the game and refused to lose.

It was a banner night for someone who is making a strong case as winner of the NBA Most Improved Player Award.

“(White) did alright, could’ve been a little better,” standout teammate DeMar DeRozan joked to reporters, via K.C. Johnson of NBC Sports Chicago.

Then DeRozan turned serious, praising White, who erupted right away, setting the tone for the game in the first quarter. The same goes for DeRozan, who finished with 22 points and nine assists.

As for White, coach Billy Donovan clearly couldn’t have been more pleased.

“He did a good job playing aggressively, took his 3s when they were there,” Donovan said. “And he made a lot of good passes to guys. I thought he played a really complete game. I know the number 42 is a huge game and really phenomenal. But I thought he played a really complete game,” coach Billy Donovan said. “I thought he defended. I thought he assisted, got downhill, made the game easy for guys.”

White and the Bulls next travel to Miami to face the Heat in another elimination game (7 p.m. EST, Friday). The Heat are expected to be without injured star Jimmy Butler. Another showing like this from White and the Bulls, and it could be the No. 8 seed and a first-round matchup with the Boston Celtics in the NBA playoffs.

But hey, for one night, White and the Bulls got to be on top of the world. Especially White, who got to hear chants of “Co-by” from Chicago fans as he put on his once-in-a-lifetime NBA showing.

He wasn’t even bothered that play-in stats don’t count.

“It was a dope moment for that to happen. I’m thankful for the fans. It felt like a playoff vibe. The place was rocking tonight,” he said, via Johnson. “And I’m definitely counting it as my career-high. It’s on the stat sheet right here.”

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