Kris Dunn improving in goal of balancing aggressiveness and ball security

and Contact ReporterChicago Tribune

Even Kris Dunn didn’t believe it.

“You sure I only had one?” the second-year guard asked late Thursday in Denver, when he was told he had just one turnover.

“Then I’m taking it. I thought I had at least two or three, but that’s a positive.”

Indeed, it is. Dunn played one of his most complete games against the Nuggets, staying aggressive while limiting his mistakes. That he scored the potential game-winning basket on a nice drive through Kenneth Faried didn’t hurt either.

“He went to the basket under control and looked like he drew some contact but finished through it,” coach Fred Hoiberg said. “Not only is Kris shooting with a lot of confidence, but he’s finishing well at the rim.”

Dunn entered Friday’s game against the Kings averaging 3.2 turnovers in 26.8 minutes.

“For Kris, it’s about consistency,” Hoiberg said. “That’s what we talk about pretty much every day with him. Now it’s about stringing some really positive games together.”

Hoiberg called Dunn’s first quarter Thursday his best of the season. That’s when Dunn helped spark the Bulls to their second-highest scoring period of the season with 39 points, scoring eight of those himself with four assists and zero turnovers.

“That’s what he does -- he gets downhill for us,” Justin Holiday said. “He’s aggressive, especially with mismatches.”

Practice makes perfect: Zach LaVine, Nikola Mirotic and Kay Felder all practiced with the Windy City Bulls of the Gatorade League, who came to the Advocate Center on Thursday and Friday.

Hoiberg watched most of Friday’s practice and said the plan is for Mirotic to shoot on the Bulls’ off day Saturday and practice Sunday before a determination is made on whether he is activated for Monday’s game against the Cavaliers. All signs point to Mirotic and Bobby Portis playing together on the second unit, with Cristiano Felicio dropping from the rotation.

LaVine’s debut after left ACL surgery is on track for late December or early January.

“It was good to see them getting up and down in a scrimmage situation,” Hoiberg said. “Zach looked like he almost hit his head on the rim on one breakaway. Niko looks like he’s getting stronger every day. He’s still really sore, training camp-type soreness, but both those guys looked really good.

“Zach will help everybody on the floor just because there’s going to be so much attention drawn to him with his ability to get on the break and run and ability to create his own shot when teams switch. He and Lauri (Markkanen) on pick-and-roll actions will be great.”

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