Alex Caruso's exceptional performance was a highlight of the night as the Chicago Bulls triumphed over the Milwaukee Bucks 120-113 in overtime on Thursday. Caruso, who took a handoff from Nikola Vucevic, masterfully dribbled past Brook Lopez and launched a fadeaway three-pointer at the end of regulation.
His shot swished through the net, forcing the game into overtime and setting the stage for the Bulls' surprising victory. Caruso commented on the ease with which he executed the crucial shot, a testament to his off-season practice.
“I just don't get the opportunity to shoot a lot because usually I'm the guy taking the ball out,” he said. This moment was a clear departure from his usual role, showcasing his ability to step up when needed.
Team Effort Leads to Victory
Despite being short-handed with Zach LaVine and DeMar DeRozan sidelined due to injuries, the Bulls showed resilience.
Vucevic scored a season-high 29 points, complemented by Coby White's 23 points, contributing significantly to the team's performance. This victory was particularly meaningful as it came after a string of five consecutive losses and at a time when the Bulls had won only six of their last 20 games.
"It is only one win,” Vucevic said. “But it's big for us at this point the way the season's been going, the way we haven't played really good basketball”. The game's climax saw the Bulls trailing by one point in overtime before Vucevic's dunk ignited an eight-point run.
Patrick Williams sealed the deal with a dunk, ensuring the Bulls' victory. On the Bucks' side, Giannis Antetokounmpo led with 26 points and 14 rebounds, with significant contributions from Lopez and Malik Beasley. Despite their efforts and a recent string of wins, the Bucks couldn't sustain their momentum against the determined Bulls.
The game was marked by high energy and strategic plays, with the Bulls leading by 12 points early in the fourth quarter before the Bucks narrowed the gap. The Bulls' 21 turnovers were balanced by a season-high of 32 assists, reflecting a well-coordinated offense that has been lacking this season.
“We knew with Zach and DeMar out, there were gonna be a handful of shots and minutes to go around,” Caruso said. “We tried to just talk to each other about not trying to do it all on our own."