Windy City Bulls advance to championship of G League's Showcase Cup

Not every local pro team is mired in a losing season.

The Windy City Bulls have gone 12-6 this season and will play in the G League's Showcase Cup championship game on Thursday afternoon in Las Vegas (2:30 p.m., ESPN2).

The Bulls have won twice so far in the eight-team tournament. They opened with a 102-96 victory over the Rio Grande Valley Vipers, then edged the Cleveland Charge 96-94 late Tuesday.

They'll be facing the Ontario Clippers in the title game, a team that includes former Loyola point guard Lucas Williamson.

The games in the Showcase Cup feature a target score. After three quarters are complete, 25 points are added to the leading team's score, and the first side to hit that mark is the winner.

That led to some tense moments in Tuesday's win over Cleveland. Windy City led for most of the game, then fell behind 93-90 in a game where the target score was 95.

Carlik Jones and Ethan Thompson scored on driving layups to put the Bulls up by 1. Cleveland's Isaiah Mobley missed a free throw that could have won it, and Jones ended the game with a foul-line jumper.

Thompson scored 22 points to lead the Bulls in the semifinals. Rookie Dalen Terry and Marko Simonovic both hit clutch 3-pointers late in the fourth quarter.

Terry then flew to Atlanta and played five minutes in the NBA Bulls' victory over the Hawks on Wednesday.

The Showcase Cup started last year, but it was disrupted with so many players getting called up to fill in for NBA players sidelined by health protocols. After 16 games, the top eight teams compete in the Cup playoffs. After Jan. 1, the G League regular season will begin.

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