Breaking News Bar
updated: 10/31/2017 2:29 PM

Grant to start as Chicago Bulls sort out point guard mix

hello
Success - Article sent! close
  • Chicago Bulls point guard Jerian Grant is average 6.6 assists per game to start the season, but he's hitting only 33.3 percent of his shots.

    Chicago Bulls point guard Jerian Grant is average 6.6 assists per game to start the season, but he's hitting only 33.3 percent of his shots.
    Associated Press

  • The Chicago Bulls expect Kris Dunn to become their starting point guard, but he is just returning to action after suffering a dislocated finger.

    The Chicago Bulls expect Kris Dunn to become their starting point guard, but he is just returning to action after suffering a dislocated finger.
    Associated Press

  • With the Chicago Bulls 29th in the league in pace of play, perhaps offensive-minded point guard Kay Felder will help get the offense running.

    With the Chicago Bulls 29th in the league in pace of play, perhaps offensive-minded point guard Kay Felder will help get the offense running.
    Associated Press

 
 

Two weeks into the season, the Bulls are right where they want to be: battling for the NBA's worst record and on track for a top-five draft pick in 2018.

But another task at hand is finding the right rebuilding pieces. The Bulls are working on the point guard spot this week, where Jerian Grant has been starting, with Kris Dunn likely to take over soon now that he's back from a dislocated left index finger.

Coach Fred Hoiberg said Grant would start Wednesday at Miami and talked about what he wants the point guard to accomplish.

"A big thing is they have to bring us a defensive presence," Hoiberg said. "They have to be able to get us into an offense. We try to get those guys out there reading situations on how teams are playing us. Every team has played us differently with different switching, with different pressure, and we have to read better the pressure releases we have out there, the switch attacks that we have and get into it quicker."

At this point, it's difficult to tell which point guard would be better at reading defenses and getting the Bulls into the appropriate offensive action. Dunn has been regarded as a good defender, but his outside shot needs work. Grant is a decent scorer who may not be an ideal fit as a playmaker.

In his five starts, Grant has averaged 9.0 points and leads the team by a wide margin in assists at 6.6. His 3-point shot has been terrible, though. He's just 1-for-16 from long range this season. Last year, he shot 36.6 percent behind the arc.

"Other than making shots I think I've been all right," Grant said Tuesday. "Getting guys involved and making plays, but at the end of the day it's a shot-making league and that's what I've got to do."

Grant obviously knew the situation heading into the season. Dunn was acquired from Minnesota in the Jimmy Butler trade and was the No. 5 pick in the 2016 draft, so there's an expectation he'll be the Bulls' starting point guard.

Grant is still proving he deserves to be an NBA regular. When Hoiberg declared open competition for the point guard spot after Saturday's blowout loss to Oklahoma City, Grant didn't take it personally.

"I'm not playing the way I need to play," he said. "At the same time, I want to show these guys I am the guy that can hold down this spot."

Hoiberg said he has thought about keeping Kay Felder in the rotation. At 5-9, Felder is an offensive-minded point guard who may be the best of the three at getting into the lane.

"Kay Felder had a good practice (Monday)," Hoiberg said. "We played a combination where a couple of the point guards were out there together playing on the same unit. So right now, with us struggling to get into the paint, to add a couple of ballhandlers out there is something we may look at."

Twitter: McGrawDHBulls

Get articles sent to your inbox.

Article Comments ()
Guidelines: Keep it civil and on topic; no profanity, vulgarity, slurs or personal attacks. People who harass others or joke about tragedies will be blocked. If a comment violates these standards or our terms of service, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box. To find our more, read our FAQ.