DeMar DeRozan Erupts for 50 Points in Bulls' OT Win over ClippersApril 1, 2022
DeMar DeRozan became the ninth player this month to score 50 points when he did so in the Chicago Bulls' 135-130 overtime win over the Los Angeles Clippers on Thursday night at United Center.
It was his best scoring performance of the season and his first 50-point game since a January 2018 matchup against the Milwaukee Bucks, when he scored a career-high 52 points as a member of the Toronto Raptors.
The Bulls entered Thursday's game having lost six out of nine and desperately needed a win to keep pace in a highly competitive Eastern Conference.
DeRozan, who is in his first season with the Bulls, is in the midst of a career year. The five-time All-Star entered Thursday's game averaging 27.7 points, 5.4 rebounds and 5.0 assists per game while shooting 50.3 percent from the floor and 34.8 percent from deep.
DeRozan has been in the MVP conversation for much of the 2021-22 campaign. However, Nikola Jokic, Joel Embiid and Giannis Antetokounmpo are now being viewed as the only realistic options for the award.
Regardless, the 32-year-old has been the perfect addition for a Chicago side that already has its most wins since the 2014-15 season.
DeRozan has served as a great complement to Zach LaVine, who is also having a highly impressive season. The 27-year-old entered Thursday's game averaging 24.6 points, 4.7 rebounds and 4.5 assists per game.
Before joining the Bulls, DeRozan spent the first nine seasons of his career with the Raptors and then played from 2018 to '21 with the San Antonio Spurs. He made the playoffs in six of those seasons but never won a title.
Considering the Bulls sit fifth in the Eastern Conference with a 45-32 record and are just four games out of first place, DeRozan could become an NBA champion this year, though he and the team have a long way to get there.