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“He has got that ‘it’ factor”: Ayo Dosunmu impressing with Bulls

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Ayo Dosunmu entered the fourth quarter on Monday with just four points, but turned in a strong performance in the final frame to help the Chicago Bulls defeat the Brooklyn Nets.

Dosunmu produced 11 of his career-high 15 points in the fourth quarter as the Bulls outscored the Nets 42-17 to pull out the 118-95 win and snap their five-game winning streak. His 11 points led the Bulls in scoring during the decisive fourth quarter.

He also hauled in seven rebounds and shot 6-of-10 from the field.

Dosunmu had a sequence early in the fourth quarter, in which he drew contact at the rim for the and-one opportunity. The play instantly energized the crowd at the United Center, which, in turn, seemingly helped spark the Bulls and their monstrous late run.

Bulls head coach Billy Donovan praised the 38th overall pick afterward.

You can watch a guy play for 10 minutes and you can figure out if he can play or not. It takes a long time to figure out a guy that has like that ‘it’ factor. He has got that ‘it’ factor. He is going to impact the game. He is going to influence the game. … He is a fearless competitor and I think that kind of mindset is going to serve him well going forward.

Dosunmu immediately developed into a fan favorite after growing up in Chicago and attending the University of Illinois. Bulls guard DeMar DeRozan even joked that Dosunmu could sneeze and that would earn a standing ovation from the crowd.

He often injects a level of energy and effort into the lineup each time he steps onto the court. With fans ready to erupt for the simplest of plays, that energy can also get his teammates going, something DeRozan said is appreciated by the team.

It just shows his hunger, grit and toughness of being in those moments and accepting the challenge, whether that’s guarding somebody, being ready to knock down a shot or being in transition and being aggressive downhill. He does a lot of things you don’t see in a lot of young guys in their first year.

It makes it even sweeter being home for him, getting the crowd behind us. We feed into that. We kind of feed off of that, as well. We definitely feel it. If he sneezes out there, the crowd will get excited, so you’ve definitely got to feed off of it.

The performance by Dosunmu marked just his second double-digit outing of the season. He played sporadically through the Bulls’ first 10 games but has helped make an impact when he is on the court. The playing time has only allowed him to improve and develop his game.

The opportunity to face elite competition, Dosunmu says, has made him better.

My game has grown a lot, just going up against so many great players. When I’m on the bench watching them warm-up or watching them get into their moves, I’m learning each and every possession. In our 10 games, we’ve faced so many good players, some of the best players in our game. Just me watching it, me being a student of the game, watching film has definitely helped my game a lot because early on, shots that I was missing, I was able to watch on film and work on it more.

The Bulls will likely continue to rely on Dosunmu moving forward as a player that can provide a spark off of the bench in different situations. It is certainly a role he appears to be comfortable in.

This post originally appeared on Rookie Wire! Follow us on Facebook!

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