Lemon's speed give Bulls a winning possession
Walt Lemon Jr. may not get many chances to hit a winning shot in the NBA, so he made the most of the opportunity on Wednesday.
He hit a tough shot in the lane to give the Bulls a 1-point lead with 30 seconds left. He made a quick spin move, got into the body of Washington center Thomas Bryant, then flipped a short fadeaway over the rim.
After the Wizards regained the lead, Lemon drove again, drew a foul and hit the winning free throws with 1.8 seconds left. The first one was important, though, because the Bulls scored quickly to get a 2-for-1 opportunity. That meant scoring before the 24-second shot would be turned off, just about guaranteeing the Bulls a final possession.
"I was blessed with speed. So coach ran a play for me to get it at the other end of the court and just go full speed and get to the rim and just try to make a play," Lemon said Thursday at the Advocate Center.
"I know in those situations, they don't leave shooters, so it was just a point of me putting my head down trying to get aggressive and getting something at the rim. Even if we miss it, I got my bigs coming down to clean it up. I'm just thankful that it went in."
Porter looks ahead:
Otto Porter Jr. hasn't been officially ruled out for the season, but it would be a surprise if he plays in any of the final three games. In Washington on Wednesday, he said he's feeling some "deep soreness" in his right shoulder, but is looking forward to next season when the Bulls might be able to put the regular lineup back together.
"Yeah, it's going to be fun," he said. "I can't wait to get (Wendell Carter) back for sure. I can't wait for everybody to get back and be healthy because it's going to be very important to our development this summer and to what we want to accomplish next year."
Porter said he'll probably split his summer between his college home in Georgetown and Chicago, while helping his new teammates get to know each other better.
"Yeah, wherever we are, whether it's Chicago, L.A., Hawaii, Tokyo, wherever we're at. That's something that as a team we definitely want to get everybody on the same page," Porter said.
Bulls coach Jim Boylen said the team has a training-camp style practice Thursday, which lasted nearly two hours. Zach LaVine (knee, quad) and Kris Dunn (back) did not participate. Lauri Markkanen did portions of the practice, even though he's done for the season. … Former Bulls center and head coach Bill Cartwright was a visitor at Thursday's practice.