McDermott leads Bulls past Raptors

Tue Mar 15, 2016 12:26am EDT
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(The Sports Xchange) - If Doug McDermott could play the Toronto Raptors every night, he would be an all-star.

Chicago's reserve forward torched the Raptors for a second straight game, pouring in a team-high 29 points as the Bulls held on for a 109-107 victory on Monday night at Air Canada Center.

"It's something about playing one of the top teams in the East gets you motivated," said McDermott, who had a career-high 30 points when the teams last met in February in Chicago.

Chicago (33-32) recorded its ninth consecutive victory over the Raptors. Toronto (44-21) has not defeated Chicago since Dec. 31, 2013.

McDermott, a second-year player averaging nine points per game, had 24 points in the first half, shooting 7-for-7 from the field, including all three of his 3-point attempts, and 7-for-8 on free throws. He wound up 9-for-11 from the floor, 4-for-5 from long range. He didn't attempt a second-half free throw.

"I was just in that zone, everything I shot felt good after I made my first couple," McDermott said of the first half. "The second half was tough just because they were all over me, but I just felt in that zone the first half and I was happy I was able to help my team win."

The Bulls led by as many as 13 points early in the fourth quarter, but the Raptors, who had won 15 of their previous 16 games at home, battled back, twice making it a one-point game in the final 20 seconds.

"I think we got into them too late defensively," said Toronto's DeMar DeRozan, who was driving for the potential game-tying basket in the final second when the Bulls' Jimmy Butler forced a turnover. "We let McDermott get into a rhythm. (E'Twaun) Moore, he got it going.

"We gave up a lot of key rebounds but even with that we were still in the game."   Continued...

Chicago Bulls forward Doug McDermott (3) during the game against the Toronto Raptors at Air Canada Centre. The Bulls beat the Raptors 109-107. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports