Billy Donovan and Nikola Vucevic lament late mistakes that led to a heartbreaking loss to the Heat

Both Billy Donovan and Nikola Vucevic emphasized the late important plays that led to the Bulls’ collapse against the Heat. On Saturday night, the Chicago Bulls were on the verge of a thrilling comeback victory over the Miami Heat. After trailing by as much as 15 points in the second quarter and 11 points to begin the fourth quarter, the Bulls were on their approach to securing their back-to-back victory against the Heat with 1:28 remaining and leading by two, 116-114.

Jimmy Butler, on the other hand, had different ideas. The former Bull hit a step-back game-winner at the buzzer to hoist Miami and stun Chicago in a heartbreaker.


Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler (22) shoots over Chicago Bulls center Nikola Vucevic (9) during the second half at Kaseya Center.


The Bulls can only blame themselves for the subsequent important moments they bungled when facing the Heat, despite a satisfying late effort to regain their footing in the game.



As time ran out, the Bulls were sloppy with the ball, allowing the Heat to crash the offensive boards. With a 111-108 lead with 3:33 remaining, Chicago failed to activate their aggressiveness on both sides of the floor. From then, Miami was able to get five offensive rebounds, propelling them to the crucial victory.

Coach Billy Donovan also accepted responsibility when DeMar DeRozan committed a costly turnover with 0:35 remaining, tying the game.

“That [offensive boards by Heat] was the hugest part,” said Donovan. “The three or four offensive rebounds that led to baskets when we could have given ourselves an opportunity to score; that didn’t allow us a chance to extend the lead. I wish I could have helped DeMar more [also]. I was in there too late when I saw the trap coming.”

Where’s the help?

Nikola Vucevic also expressed his remorse about the way they defended Butler when it was obvious that the star forward was looking to drain the last shot for the Bulls.

Due to the absence of help defense, Butler freed himself to sink the walk-off jumper for Miami.

“It happened quick,” said Vucevic. “They got the rebound and brought it down the floor and he made a good shot. In that moment probably should have sent someone over when it got to two, three (seconds). It would have been hard for him to find somebody else.”

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