Coby, Gafford, Hutchison: Takeaways from Bulls-Hornets

Mark Strotman

The Bulls pulled out a come-from-behind victory against the Charlotte Hornets on Wednesday, finishing their four-game slate with a 2-2 record in Las Vegas. Here are a few takeaways:

Coby White's efficiency continues to dip, but it feels like he's been given the green light to be aggressive and stay aggressive. He finished Wednesday with 11 points, 7 rebounds and 5 assists. He shot 4 of 17 from the field and 1 of 7 from beyond the arc. But don't read too much into his shooting splits – now .357/.115/.750. Summer League games are a little chaotic by nature and White is taking shots he won't be taking with Zach LaVine and Lauri Markkanen on the floor.

What was interesting to note was where White played on Wednesday. He spent a good portion of the second quarter off the ball – with Adam Mokoka and Walt Lemon Jr. at the point – and looked comfortable attacking on the wing. White's ability to play both guard positions will be critical to his development in Year 1, especially with the Bulls having four point guards on the roster (for now). It was good to see him get minutes away from the ball. Long-term, the Bulls want White to be a point guard. But there's value in him playing from the wing once he evens out his 3-point shot.

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Chandler Hutchison had a strong start on Wednesday after Monday's clunker. He had 11 points on 4 of 8 shooting in the first half but cooled off after halftime, finishing with 18 points on 5 of 17 shooting and 9 rebounds. He just hasn't taken over like a 23-year-old with half an NBA season under his belt should be in these games.

He was notably aggressive attacking the basket (he had 9 free throw attempts) and his drives on Wednesday were better than they were on Monday. But he hasn't done much in Las Vegas to solidify minutes behind Otto Porter on the wing. He may to play there out of necessity, but his training camp and preseason performance will be something to watch. The athleticism is there; now it's about finishing.

Daniel Gafford once again feasted inside. We wrote about him yesterday being excellent around the rim, and he performed well again on Wednesday. He had 20 points and 10 rebounds, shooting 6 of 11 from the field and a surprising 8 of 10 from the free throw line.

He had a massive block on Dwayne Bacon in the final 2 minutes of a one-possession game, and the Bulls took the lead on the other end. It was his only block of the evening but a big one at that. He continues to impress in Las Vegas.

He's flown under the radar because of Chandler Hutchison and the two 2019 draft picks (White and Gafford), but Adam Mokoka has put together a really solid Summer League. Billed as more of a slasher and a long defender, it's been his perimeter shooting that has opened eyes through four games. Mokoka hit two more catch-and-three 3-pointers in Wednesday's loss to the Hornets, making him 5 of 14 (35.7%) in Las Vegas.

Those numbers aren't outstanding by any stretch, but considering it wasn't considered a strong suit of his it's a promising development. His defense has been solid – you can tell he's got good length – and he's been able to play some point guard, too. That will go a long way at the next level. It's clear why the Bulls liked him so much. He's taken good shots (7 of 11 inside the arc) and has rebounded well for his size.

For now, he's an intriguing prospect who the Bulls will want to watch carefully with Windy City. If that 3-point shooting continues to hover around 37-38%, he's got a chance to play real minutes on the wing at some point this season.

Coby, Gafford, Hutchison: Takeaways from Bulls-Hornets originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago

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