Rookie Terry will be in spotlight as Bulls open summer league

                                                                                                                                                                                                   
  • The Bulls aren't sending much of their regular-season roster to the Las Vegas summer league, so most of the attention will be on rookie Dalen Terry when the Bulls face Dallas in the summer opener Friday.

    The Bulls aren't sending much of their regular-season roster to the Las Vegas summer league, so most of the attention will be on rookie Dalen Terry when the Bulls face Dallas in the summer opener Friday. Associated Press

 
 
Updated 7/7/2022 7:32 PM

The Bulls will take the court at the Las Vegas summer league on Friday.

So here's a reminder: The first rule of summer league is don't get carried away with anything that happens, especially if somebody plays well.

 

The list of Bulls players who starred at summer league, then had short careers with the team is lengthy.

Overreaction has already begun with Oklahoma City's Chet Holmgren, whose odds to win rookie of the year plummeted after a strong opening night in the Rocky Mountain Revue.

Summer league won't be much of a showcase for the Bulls, though. Their roster for next season is set, and only two of those players will be in Las Vegas, rookie Dalen Terry and second-year big man Marko Simonovic.

Two-way addition Justin Lewis, a 6-7 forward from Marquette, will make his Bulls debut; and returning two-way player Malcolm Hill is on the roster. Beyond that, it's a tryout camp for the Windy City Bulls.

Some teams are sending key players. Detroit's roster includes not only Cade Cunningham and draft pick Jaden Ivy, but also third-year guys like Saddiq Bey, Isaiah Stewart and Killian Hayes. How much those guys play remains to be seen.

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But for the Bulls, all eyes will be on Terry, the energetic 6-7 swingman from Arizona.

After the Bulls first summer practice, assistant coach John Bryant asked for nominations for the hardest-working player of the day.

According to Terry, he won on the recommendation of Patrick Williams, who obviously is not playing in summer league games.

"Every day coach says somebody needs to vote somebody else the most competitive player of the day or whatever we want to call it," Terry said. "He said somebody speak up and Pat spoke up and said me.

"I was playing defense today, I was talking, making guys know I was here on the floor, just trying to live up to the hype when it comes to being a lead guy, being competitive."

It's tough to predict what sort of role Terry will have this season. If the Bulls stay relatively healthy, he may not play much. But last year's rookie Ayo Dosunmu ended up playing heavy minutes because there were so many injuries.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

Terry averaged 8.0 points in college last season, so scoring doesn't figure to be his role as a rookie. General manager Marc Eversley mentioned defense and running the floor on draft night.

"It really doesn't matter to me because I know when I go on the court I'm going to produce," Terry said. "Like I said I'm very versatile, so I was all over the court (in practice). I was bringing it up, I was rebounding, I was taking the ball out, setting screens. I can't really give you the role. I was doing a lot."

Simonovic said he's been able to increase his weight from 215 to 240 pounds, so it will be interesting to see how that plays out in summer league. Last year, he played just 35 total minutes with the NBA Bulls, but averaged 17 points and 9.8 rebounds in 29 games for Windy City.

"Everyone said I am looking better than I was before, so I am happy to hear that and just keep working," Simonovic said. "I think I've grown a lot, but I have a lot of space to improve."

The Bulls will open against Dallas at 3 p.m. Friday. They'll face New York on Sunday, Toronto on Tuesday and Charlotte next Thursday, with at least one more game to be determined. All games will be televised by NBATV or one of the ESPN channels.

It's been only a couple weeks since the NBA draft, but that's been enough time for Terry to get a quick tour of Chicago.

"Man, I love Chicago," the Phoenix native said. "I've seen the Bean for the first time. Man, just being in the city, this is the best time to be here everybody says it's not too hot, it's not too cold. I just know you may have to re-ask me this question when it gets cold."

-- The Bulls officially announced Zach LaVine's new contract. No terms were revealed, but he'll reportedly get $215 million over five years. The team announced the signing of center Andre Drummond and re-signing of forward Derrick Jones Jr. on Wednesday. Goran Dragic is the expected addition still pending.

Twitter: @McGrawDHSports

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