Chicago Bulls All-Star forward DeMar DeRozan stayed on a roll offensively heading into the All-Star break and set an NBA record in Wednesday’s 125-118 victory over the Sacramento Kings.
DeRozan scored 38 points on 16-for-27 (59%) shooting Wednesday, making him the first player in NBA history to score 35 points while shooting better than 50% from the field in seven consecutive games. DeRozan surpassed a mark set by Wilt Chamberlain, who put together two such streaks of six games in a row, the last of which came in 1963.
“Just to be in the record books along with staples of basketball history — [I’m] speechless,” DeRozan said following Wednesday’s game. “As a kid, as a fan of the history of the game, being in the league as long as I’ve been in the league, things like that continue to make me even more humble.
“It’s something I’ll never take for granted. And the crazy thing is, I feel like I missed eight easy shots I normally would have made. I felt like I had a bad shooting night, honestly.”
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During his streak, perhaps going 16-for-27 is what qualifies as a bad shooting night for DeRozan. He is averaging 38.6 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.6 assists on 60.7% shooting in his past seven games.
DeRozan has also scored at least 30 points in eight consecutive games, the longest streak by a Bulls player since Michael Jordan in 1996. DeRozan is tied with Philadelphia’s Joel Embiid for the longest streak of 30 or more points by a player this season.
Asked to describe his current scoring run and how locked in he feels, DeRozan replied: “I can’t.”
“I’ll be honest with you, I can’t. I can’t describe it,” he said. “It’s one of those things where I’m completely locked in as soon as I come to work. Understanding, I want to be able to leave work with a win by any means necessary.”
DeRozan’s performance has helped carry the Bulls to five consecutive wins, despite fellow All-Star Zach LaVine missing the past three games to see a specialist in Los Angeles about his left knee injury.
With a win Wednesday, the Bulls enter the All-Star break, at least, tied with the Miami Heat for the top spot in the Eastern Conference.
“I’m hopeful that we can get whole at some point, I think I’d like to see what this group can do whole,” Bulls coach Billy Donovan said. “I am very, very grateful and appreciative, up until this point in the All-Star break — we’ve had some really good moments and some not so great moments, which is typical — the way these guys have continued to fight, regardless if it’s been a win or a loss.”
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