Minutes after Coby White and the Chicago Bulls were manhandled 127-109 by the Miami Heat on their own home floor–in a game that saw the Bulls’ guard go 0-for-9 from the field in a scoreless effort–the North Carolina alum drew the ire of some fans and a podcaster.
During White’s post-game presser, rather than give his attention to members of the local media who wanted to talk to him about his continued shooting slump, the 22-year-old seemed more interested in cheering his Tar Heels to victory in their National Semifinal game against the Duke Blue Devils on Saturday night.
Here is a look at White’s session with the media, where he uttered: “We won,” pounded on the table and said “clap it up,” before listening to questions about the team’s loss.
White is mired in a 2-for-24 shooting slump dating back to the team’s March 26 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers. To make matters worse, White was repeatedly targeted on the defensive end as Jimmy Butler and other Heat players used the Bulls guard like a turnstile racking up points when White was the primary defender.
Heat basketball content manager Couper Moorhead tweeted this as Butler was taking advantage of White on four consecutive possessions in the second half.
Considering how poorly White has played, and how easily the Heat and the other top teams in the NBA have handled the Bulls (Chicago is now 2-19 against the Top-4 teams in both conferences), it’s not difficult to see why some were upset.
Pat the Designer, a co-host on the LockedonBulls podcast didn’t hold back his criticism for White’s approach to his post-game presser.
Coby White’s Effort Should Never Be Questioned
White’s effort and desire to play well have seemed evident since he came into the league with the Bulls three seasons ago. While never a strong defender, White has seemingly worked hard to continue to give an honest effort on that end of the floor. He fights harder to get over screens (though often unsuccessfully) and he contests most shots (sometimes recklessly).
As an offensive player, White isn’t a playmaking point guard. He seems best in a catch-and-shoot role. Unfortunately, when you’re in a 2-for-24 slump from three-point-range, the most important component of the catch-and-shoot archetype isn’t intact.
White appeared to be frustrated during his presser, and that is understandable considering his individual and the team’s struggles. However, it seemed inevitable someone would call him out on his vigorous discussion of his college team’s success at such a tough moment for himself and his professional club.
The Bulls desperately need White to find his shot as they head into the final five games of the regular season and the postseason. White’s three-point shooting is a big part of spacing the floor for the second unit. Without that element, teams collapse on Zach LaVine or DeMar DeRozan, and whomever White is on the floor with at the time.
The Bulls’ offense then gets stagnant, and they have to be more dependent on the primary scorers.
White’s Days in Chicago Could Be Numbered
Thanks to the ascension of Ayo Dosunmu, White’s days with the Bulls could be numbered. A team like the Los Angeles Lakers would kill to have White on their roster right now.
Other teams with a need for a bomber off the bench and who are perhaps a reserve piece away from reaching the next level might also have some interest in White. Chicago can use him as a trade chip in the offseason, and thanks to their surprising rookie Dosunmu, the Bulls are unlikely to miss White.
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