Back to the drawing board for Bulls rookie Dalen Terry and playing time

Terry knew his heavy workload against the Bucks was a fluke because of all the injuries at the time, but he was still hoping for a rotation look. That all but disappeared once Patrick Beverley was added into the mix.

SHARE Back to the drawing board for Bulls rookie Dalen Terry and playing time
Dalen Terry

Rookie Dalen Terry knew his heavy minutes against Milwaukee were in jeopardy of disappearing after the break, but was still hoping for some rotation time. The Patrick Beverley signing changed all of that.

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Rookie guard Dalen Terry went into the All-Star break knowing his days of playing 27 minutes — like he did against the Bucks on Feb. 16 — were over before they got started. He was only getting those minutes because of how short-handed the injured Bulls were at the time.

Terry did, however, hope his showing against the Bucks — 13 points, seven rebounds and six assists — might earn him some extra minutes off the bench.

Then the Patrick Beverley signing happened.

Bye-bye, rotation spot.

“With the circumstances of what happened over break, I talked to [coach] Billy [Donovan], and he was like, ‘Hey, just keep doing what you’re doing — I love the way you played,’ ” Terry said Friday. “He handed me a few compliments, like, ‘I admired the way you stayed ready.’ He told me keep staying ready, that I get to see the highs and lows and was ready to go.

“As far as the role, I’m going to keep doing what I’ve been doing. Just stay ready and wait for my turn.”

But it could be a long wait for the No. 18 pick in last year’s draft. Beverley getting a starting spot creates an even bigger logjam in the backcourt now that Alex Caruso, DeMar DeRozan and Derrick Jones Jr. are all back and healthy.

Terry, who scored 11 points in 10½ minutes off the bench Friday night against the Nets, was typically getting mop-up minutes at best even before Beverley was added. He’ll go back to

focusing on his late-night visits to the Advocate Center and likely more stints with the Windy City Bulls of the G-League.

“I take my workouts at night, and both before and after practice, [I’m] real serious because I know that because I’m not playing, I’ve always got to stay in shape,” he said. “It was an adjustment for me earlier in the season because I’ve never not played. Just making sure I keep getting the extra reps, even if I’m not getting the reps in practice. A lot of it is knowing that my window for error is small, so I’ve got to play as hard as I can, even if I am winded.”

Working the phones

Veteran Zach LaVine says he stays out of front-office business, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t act as a recruiter. Over the years, he has made numerous calls and sent texts to other NBA players about coming to the Bulls. Beverley was one of those targets.

“Maybe a lot of you guys don’t know, but I was trying to get Pat here at least a year or two ago,” LaVine said. “Been texting him. We used to be at the same agency. He’s somebody you hate to play against but love as a teammate. You know what he brings, the type of mentality he brings. We’ve been missing that.”

Foul-low the leader

Second-year Bull Ayo Dosunmu is excited about having Beverley as a mentor at point guard. Donovan hopes the first thing Dosunmu learns is how to limit his fouling. The coach pointed out Dosunmu’s three fouls in the first half of the Bulls’ loss to All-Star Damian Lillard and the Trail Blazers on Feb. 4.

“[He needs] the understanding that we have 14 fouls and you’re playing against a veteran guard who’s baiting you into getting to the free-throw line in 2-for-1 situations,” Donovan said.

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