Chicago Bulls' White working to improve point guard skills
With Kris Dunn out for at least another month, what does that mean for rookie Coby White?
There have been plenty of calls for him to join the starting lineup, even though he has struggled to find his way this season. At the all-star break, White is averaging 11.1 points and 2.4 assists, while shooting 33.8 percent from 3-point range.
"I think you've seen the (Tomas) Satoransky-(Zach) LaVine-Coby lineup," coach Jim Boylen said. "I expect to have that out there as we go down the stretch, have those guys play together.
"What I'd like him not to do is worry about mistakes or hang on to missed opportunities or missed shots. I'd like him to play forward more."
By that, Boylen means looking ahead to the next play, not worrying about the last missed shot. With increased minutes in the five games Dunn already missed, White has averaged 11.4 points, his 3-point percentage is down (27.8 percent), but his assists are up to 5.0.
On Wednesday at the Advocate Center, White talked about striving to improve his point-guard skills. He was billed as a point guard coming out of North Carolina before the draft, but it was quickly obvious that shooting and scoring are his specialties.
"I'm starting to get better at it and making the right reads and just making the simple plays," said White, who celebrated his 20th birthday Sunday. "Point-guard instincts, just being on the ball and being able to playmake and contribute."
Rudy T makes cut:
Coach Jim Boylen was happy to see his NBA mentor, Rudy Tomjanovich, named a finalist for the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame over the weekend.
"Well, he's deserving," Boylen said. "I don't really understand why he's not in there yet. It doesn't make sense to me. Two championships, a gold medal, what he did with those Rockets teams and his playoff games, won it as a six seed in '95, play on the road like we did -- nobody's duplicated that.
"He has an unbelievable record in elimination games, which I think is a true test of your coaching and being able to communicate your message. He's as well-deserving as anybody I've seen or been around. I think he's getting in. He's overdue."
White stays patient:
Early in the year, Coby White delivered one of the all-time hot streaks from 3-point range over a two-game stretch on Nov. 12 and 14. Otherwise, his rookie season has been a learning experience, as it is for most players.
"The rookie experience is definitely humbling," White said. "It humbles you. It's up and down. But like I always say, my teammates and the coaching staff and the front office, they all support me and they always keep me positive.
"I've got a good supporting cast at home with my family. Patience -- a lot of people just tell me patience, my time is coming. A lot of people, they all believe in me, so just patience and just keep getting better day by day, that's all you really can do.
White, Zach LaVine and Tomas Satoransky are the only three Bulls to play in every game this season.