As was widely expected, the Chicago Bulls’ best player throughout the 2021-22 NBA season, a resurgent DeMar DeRozan, was named to an All-NBA Team for the third time in his career on Tuesday. The 32-year-old veteran swingman was honored with a selection to the 2022 All-NBA Second Team. He had previously made the 2018 All-NBA Second Team and the 2017 All-NBA Third Team while with the Toronto Raptors.
Take a gander at this year’s full voting results:
DeRozan had a career year in his debut campaign for the Bulls.. Across 76 games, he averaged a career-best 27.9 points per game on shooting splits of 50.4% from the field, a career-high 35.2% from deep on 1.9 attempts, and 87.7% from the line on 7.8 looks a night. DeRozan also chipped in 5.2 rebounds, 4.9 assists and 0.9 steals a night.
This fan’s favorite DeRozan moment occurred when he nailed back-to-back treys to defeat lottery-bound Eastern Conference foes, helping save Bulls teams mired in injury issues.
The first came against the Pacers on New Year’s Eve:
DeRozan’s second picture-perfect buzzer-beating game winner happened against the Wizards the very next night:
DeRozan’s charmed run didn’t quite stop there. In February, he went on an epic scoring run, scoring 35 points or more on 50% field goal shooting or better for eight consecutive games. In many cases, Deebo’s surreal box score tallies during that streak helped the Bulls secure much-needed victories to remain near the top of the Eastern Conference during that stretch. That 35+ point stretch was also part of a bigger run wherein DeRozan scored 30+ points across 10 straight contests.
Sadly, even DeRozan’s individual heroics weren’t enough to overcome injuries to his teammates. Especially the decline in play of Zach LaVine, who at one point during the season seemed destined to join DeMarvelous on an All-NBA Team of his own. Instead he played through a knee injury for much of the 2nd half of the season which depressed his numbers and effectively eliminated his chance of making the league’s 15 best players.
That LaVine didn’t receive this award means he is ineligible for a ‘supermax’ extension offer from the Bulls, as he heads into unrestricted free agency this summer.
LaVine is also heading into the summer recovering from another knee surgery. The Bulls announced Tuesday via press statement that the 27-year-old went under the knife at a Los Angeles-area hospital for an arthroscopic surgery on his left knee. While deemed ‘successful’, there was no further information on what was found, nor the prognosis time for recovery.