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updated: 12/21/2016 8:29 PM

Hoiberg believes defense keyed Bulls’ drastic turnaround

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  • Chicago Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg signals to his bench during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Milwaukee Bucks Thursday, Dec. 15, 2016, in Milwaukee.

    Chicago Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg signals to his bench during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Milwaukee Bucks Thursday, Dec. 15, 2016, in Milwaukee.
    Associated Press

 
 

The Bulls beat Detroit by 31 points on Monday, three days after losing to Milwaukee by 26, making it the fourth time in franchise history the Bulls followed a loss by at least 25 points with a win by at least 25 points.

Even though the Bucks scored a relatively low 95 points when beating the Bulls, coach Fred Hoiberg believes the turnaround started with defense.

"We had a great defensive edge to us right out of the gate (on Monday)," he said. "The previous two games … we were taking the ball out of the net. We weren't able to get into our flow offense. We're much more effective when we can get into that.

"I thought Rajon (Rondo) did a great job of running the show and getting guys out running with him, calling some good secondary actions when we didn't have our primary break. Again, it all started on the defensive end of the floor. I love the effort our guys came out of the gate with."

McDermott gets shots:

Doug McDermott is averaging 2.5 attempts from 3-point range this season, which ranks fifth on the team. His 3-point percentage (.324) has been disappointing, but he could probably use more shots to get in rhythm.

McDermott went 1-for-3 from long range on Monday against Detroit, but took 12 shots overall. That's his second-highest total of the season and most since Oct. 29.

"(Rajon) Rondo called a couple good plays for him as far as getting him coming off screens," coach Fred Hoiberg said. "He's a weapon out there. We have to make sure we're using him the right way when he's on the floor. He still has to slow down a little. But he's coming. I like the rhythm and confidence he played with (Monday)."

Rose feels the N.Y. love:

Knicks guard Derrick Rose made another reference Wednesday to feeling more appreciated in New York than he did in Chicago. Rose assessed his play this season.

"I felt like I was doing the same thing in Chicago, especially the second half (of last season). But I told you in Chicago they're not trying to see that. They saw me in my MVP form so anything less than that they're not trying to see it, they're not trying to hear about it," Rose said, according to the New York Daily News. "It's not even expectations. It's just feeling appreciated for just going out here and playing hard."

Bulls horns:

Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg said Michael Carter-Williams will make the weekend trip to Charlotte and San Antonio. There's no word yet on when Carter-Williams, out since Oct. 31 with left wrist and knee injuries, will be ready for game action, but it should be soon. … The Bulls were 12-4 this season when leading or tied after one quarter. They led the Wizards 33-22 at the end of Wednesday's first quarter. … In a scheduling oddity, six of the last seven Bulls-Wizards games have been played in Chicago.