CHICAGO – Thanks to his tenacious play both in the starting lineup and off the bench, the native of Chicago and former Morgan Park star has already created a few memories in just over a year of playing in the NBA.
But Wednesday might have been the best moment yet in a Bulls’ uniform for guard Ayo Dosunmu against the Hawks in Atlanta.
With the game tied at 108 in the closing seconds at Philips Arena, the guard picked up a rebound underneath the basket after DeMar DeRozan missed a shot from the corner. Dosunmu then put the ball in the hoop just ahead of the horn to give the Bulls a two-point victory.
Teammates immediately mobbed the guard as he went to the floor after the shot went in, with Andre Drummond pouring water on his head in celebration.
It marked the first time that Dosunmu hit a buzzer-beater as a professional, doing so in his 106th regular season contest in the NBA. It completed a nine-point, three-rebound, two-assist effort for the second-year player in 34 minutes off the bench.
The shot completed a very active finish to a game in which the Bulls had as much as an 18-point lead in the first half. The Hawks cut into that lead and the teams battled to the end, trading the advantage in the final minutes.
DeRozan gave the Bulls the lead with 11 seconds left on a jumper, then Onyeka Okongwu evened the game with four seconds left on an ally oop slam.
Playing mostly off the bench the last few weeks, Dosunmu is averaging 9.5 points, 3.1 rebounds, and 2.7 assists in 26.3 minutes per game.
But Dosunmu was there to play the hero, doing so with the putback as time expired in one of the great moments of his career so far.