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10 observations: Ayo Dosunmu leads Bulls to blowout victory over Wizards

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The Chicago Bulls defeated the Washington Wizards 127-98 on Saturday night at the United Center.

"I know they're a struggling team and have not played well this season but they have some very good players and they play hard and we approached the game very seriously, especially missing Coby (White) and some other guys as well," Nikola Vucevic said. "I'm just really happy with our approach from the beginning to the end."

Here are 10 observations:

---The Bulls posted just their second 20-point victory of the season. They tied their largest margin of victory, which previously came on Jan. 20 against the Memphis Grizzlies, a 29-point blowout. The last 11 victories had been by 10 points or less.

---Pregame, coach Billy Donovan talked about the need for Ayo Dosunmu to focus on shot creation by “touching the paint,” either via drive or pass. Dosunmu entered having averaged over 5 assists over his previous 10 games. And with Coby White out on top of Zach LaVine’s absence, the Bulls are missing two primary shot creators.

---Dosunmu tied his career high for most points in a half with 18 before halftime. He then scored 10 seconds into the second half and finished with a career-high 34 points and nine assists.

---Nikola Vucevic served as the beneficiary of Dosunmu’s paint probing. He scored 16 points without a miss in the first quarter and finished with 29 points and 13 rebounds. Dosunmu dished and drove to Vucevic twice early to set the tone for a big night in the paint for the Bulls.

Vucevic drew a technical late in the fourth for shoving Eugene Omoruyi after the third-year big man stripped him in the open court. On the next possession, Vucevic scored on an and-one over Omoruyi and flashed the “too small” gesture at him.

"When he stole the ball from me, I was talking to Jacyn (Goble) the ref afterwards and he came down and said some things I didn't like that I don't think you should say to another man, especially not on the court and especially not being a young guy trying to make it against a player who has been around a long time and an older player.

"He's playing hard and competing. I respect that. But you gotta watch what you say and how you talk to people. You gotta be respectful. That's the only problem I had with that. That's why I said something back to him and why when I got the and-one, I had a little bit of fun with that. That was my way of talking back.

"You can trash talk and whatever. But you gotta be careful with the choice of words you use. The one he used is something you should never be using. He said, 'Shut up' and then he used the 'B-word." I just think that's very disrespectful to say to anybody. As a young player, you gotta know better than that."

---Alex Caruso continued his career-best offensive season, reaching double figures for his third straight game. He scored 16 points and knocked down two more 3-pointers, giving him 12 over his last three games.

---DeMar DeRozan didn’t take a shot until the 3 minute, 50 second mark of the second quarter, which he made. By that point, he had four assists. DeRozan scored 13 points on only seven shots, narrowly avoiding just his second single-digit scoring night of the season. He made an uncharacteristic seven of 11 free throws.

---The Wizards recently endured a 16-game losing streak before posting back-to-back victories over Charlotte and Miami on March 8-10. They then lost two straight, entering Saturday as losers of 18 of 20. And they lost Deni Avdija as a late scratch to a knee contusion on a night when they had several other regulars already out. “Every game is hard for us,” Donovan said, when asked about the favorable matchup.

---White missed his second straight game with the right hip injury he suffered on Wednesday in Indianapolis. Coach Billy Donovan said the organizational hope is that White can play late next week if he continues to progress with his soreness and discomfort. The Bulls play at Houston on Wednesday and versus Boston at home on Saturday.

---The news is worse for rookie Julian Phillips, who is in a walking boot for his sprained right foot. Donovan said he will be out at least two weeks, the first timeline placed on the second-round pick’s situation.

---Jevon Carter served as sixth man, capping a wild three games for the veteran guard. He didn’t play by coach’s decision two games ago, scored in double figures last game and was first off the bench against the Wizards.

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