Bulls Youngster Gets Honest About Limited Role

Dalen Terry of the Chicago Bulls

Getty Dalen Terry of the Chicago Bulls.

Patience is a virtue and not an easy one to master. But Chicago Bulls rookie Dalen Terry is working on it.

He’s averaging just 3.1 minutes a game, but he did get just under 10 on-court minutes in the Bulls’ November 6 loss to the Toronto Raptors.

“Everybody preaches stay ready,” Terry said after the game, according to NBC Sports Chicago’s K.C. Johnson. “That’s what I’ve been doing these past few games. I think I played pretty good. We didn’t get the dub, so I’m bummed about that. But I thought my overall performance was pretty good and I’m just going to build on what I did.”

Terry, who was the Bulls’ 18th pick in the draft, finished with four points, hitting both of his field goal attempts. He had one turnover but also tallied one assist, one block, one rebound and one assist while also making some other plays that didn’t show up in the stat sheet at the end of the night.

Terry finished as a plus-one, marking the fourth time he has posted a positive or at least neutral plus-minus in six regular-season appearances. He’s averaging 0.7 points, 0.3 assists and 0.3 boards while shooting just 28% from the floor.

Billy Donovan Praises Terry

Despite his limited minutes and low shooting percentage, good things seem to happen when Terry, 20, steps on the floor.

“He was fine,” said Bulls head coach Billy Donovan. “It’s hard for him because he hasn’t got consistent minutes. But he’s going to play with energy and make something happen. … I was happy he got a chance. I love his competitive spirit.”

Donovan did acknowledge that Terry missed some things on the defensive end.

Terry said that he has been leaning on the team’s veterans such as DeMar DeRozan, who encouraged him to trust the process that many have gone through before.

“When I get my opportunity,” Terry said, according to a November 6 Chicago Sun-Times story, “I’m not giving it back.’’

The rookie had told Johnson, of NBC Sports Chicago, that he figured more minutes could come his way because the Bulls were shorthanded in the backcourt without Zach LaVine and Coby White. He was right and saw minutes in the first quarter.

And early in the fourth quarter, he made something happen with the shot clock expiring.

Cats Running Wild

Terry said at first it was tough to play so little because he’d always played big minutes at the University of Arizona. But he compared his first month in the NBA to his freshman year in college. He would see upwards of 30 minutes one night and 10 minutes the next.

Even in his limited playing time, Terry has impressed because he seems to make positive things happen. There might be something in the water in Tucson, as Terry is part of an impressive rookie class from Arizona.

Terry’s former backcourt mate, Bennedict Mathurin, has been a revelation for the Indiana Pacers, and the Bulls just got a front-row seat to the Christian Koloko experience against the Raptors.

Terry said what Koloko did against the Bulls was “definitely not anything” he hadn’t seen before.

But in what has become a typical fashion for the 21-year-old sparkplug, he followed that by saying the Bulls would “see him again” on Monday in the back end of their home-and-home mini-series.

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