Tar Heels in NBA: Text from brother helps ignite second half for White in win at Boston

By R.L. Bynum

After he scored only three points on 1 of 7 shooting and his Chicago Bulls trailing at Boston by six at halftime, Coby White turned things around in the second half.

White scored 16 of his 19 points in the second half and finished with three rebounds and seven assists against only one turnover as the Bulls earned a 102–96 victory Monday night.

White helped preserve the win by stealing the ball from Jaylen Brown with 1:12 left and Chicago clinging to a four-point lead.

“The competitor in me, of course, I wanted to have the ball in those situations. Those types of situations build character,” said White, who put up a 16.9 game score.

White has a lot to do with the Bulls winning back-to-back games without their leading scorer, Zach LaVine, who has missed three games while in the NBA’s COVID-19 health and safety protocols.

A big improvement for White is that he has only one turnover in two of his last three games and he credited Bulls assistant coach Mo Cheeks for that.

“He’s been on me the whole season about it, but especially now,” White said. “Just taking care of the ball, being the point guard, that’s my responsibility. I give credit to Mo Cheeks. He’s been on me about it. Just telling me to make the simple play and go from A to B, not A to D or A to C. Make it simple.”

Give some credit to White’s brother Will, who pointed out that White wasn’t taking advantage of teammate Daniel Theis slipping screens.

Read Steve Kirschner’s memories of being the primary sports information contact for Hall of Fame coaches Dean Smith and Roy Williams. There are some terrific stories in this media notebook.

“I knew I missed him, but it’s crazy,” White said of a chance to pass to an open Theis in the first half. “So, I think [the next] timeout I said, ‘I missed you in the first half. If you keep slipping, I’m going to get you.’ And when I came back to locker room, I checked my phone because I know my brother texts me every halftime and he said those exact words, ‘You got Theis to slip every time because they switch on the first screen on a double-drag.’ “

In the first minute of the second half, White and Theis made the Celtics pay for the switching.

“So when I came out in the second half, I had already known that they were switching, so when he slipped it, all I had to do was throw it to the rim and I knew he was gonna get it,” White said.

White made all six free-throw attempts to push his percentage for the season to 91.2%, which is eighth in the league.

Tony Bradley equaled his best scoring game as a member of the Oklahoma City Thunder with 16 points in the team’s 119–107 loss at Washington, its 11th consecutive defeat.

Bradley made all seven shots and had three rebounds and two steals for an 11.8 game score. Bradley, whose season-high was 18 points for Philadelphia against Golden State on March 23 in his final game with the Sixers, also scored 16 points for the Thunder against the 76ers on April 10.

Danny Green collected 12 points, four 3-pointers, seven rebounds, two assists, three steals and a 12.7 game score but it wasn’t enough to overcome Stephen Curry and the Golden State Warriors. In the Warriors’ 107–96 win, Curry scored 49 points for an eye-popping 32.2 game score.

Cameron Johnson had 13 points and three 3-pointers in the Phoenix Suns’ 128–127 overtime victory at Milwaukee.

How Tar Heels did Monday, what’s next

Cole Anthony, Orlando Magic guard
No game
Season statistics — 32 games, 11.4 points, 4.5 rebounds, 4.2 assists, 38.4FG%, 30.3%3P, 84.9FT
Up next — Tuesday at Atlanta, 7:30 p.m.; Thursday vs. New Orleans, 7 p.m.
Harrison Barnes, Sacramento Kings guard
No game
Season statistics
— 54 games, 15.7 points, 6.6 rebounds, 3.4 assists, 49.2FG%, 37.4%3P, 82.6FT%
Up next — Tuesday vs. Minnesota, 10 p.m.; Wednesday vs. Minnesota, 10 p.m.
Tony Bradley, Oklahoma City Thunder center/forward
119–107 loss at Washington —
20 minutes, 16 points, 7–7 FG, 2–2 FT, 3 rebounds, 2 steals, 2 turnovers, -3, 11.8 game score
Season statistics
— 33 games, 7.1 points, 5.7 rebounds, 0.9 of an assist, 67.3 FG%, 0–2 3FG, 70.7FT%
Up next —
Wednesday at Indiana, 7 p.m.; Friday vs. Washington, 8 p.m.
Reggie Bullock, New York Knicks guard/forward
No game
Season statistics —
51 games, 10.0 points, 3.4 rebounds, 1.4 assists, 43.4FG%, 40.1%3P, 88.9FT%
Up next — Tuesday vs. Charlotte, 7:30 p.m., BSSE; Wednesday vs. Atlanta 8 p.m.
Ed Davis, Minnesota Timberwolves center/forward
No game
Season statistics
— 22 games, 2.2 points, 5.1 rebounds, 1.0 assist, 43.2FG%, 0–0 3FG, 83.3FT%
Up next — Tuesday at Sacramento, 10 p.m.; Wednesday at Sacramento, 10 p.m.
Wayne Ellington, Detroit Pistons guard
109–105 win vs. Cleveland — Didn’t play to get rest
Season statistics —
41 games, 9.7 points, 1.9 rebounds, 1.4 assists, 44.7FG%, 42.4 3P%, 78.8FT%
Up next — Wednesday at Dallas, 8:30 p.m.; Thursday at San Antonio, 8:30 p.m.
Danny Green, Philadelphia 76ers forward
107–96 loss vs. Golden State —
Started; 33 minutes, 12 points, 4–8 FG, 4–7 3FG, 7 rebounds, 2 assists, 3 steals, 1 turnover, -3, 12.7 game score
Season statistics — 56 games, 9.7 points, 3.8 rebounds, 1.7 assists, 42.1FG%, 41.5%3P, 75.8FT%
Up next —
Wednesday vs. Phoenix, 7 p.m., NBATV; Thursday at Milwaukee, 7 p.m., TNT
Cameron Johnson, Phoenix Suns wing
128–127 overtime win at Milwaukee —
19 minutes, 13 points, 5–8 FG, 3–6 3FG, 1 rebound, 1 assist, -5, 9.6 game score
Season statistics — 51 games, 9.8 points, 3.2 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 44.6FG%, 38.7%3P, 87.2FT%
Up next — Wednesday at Philadelphia, 7 p.m., NBATV; Thursday at Boston, 7 p.m.
Nassir Little, Portland Blazers forward/guard
No game
Season statistics — 37 games, 5.1 points, 2.7 rebounds, 0.5 of an assist, 47.8%FG, 37.1%3P, 82.5FT%
Up next — Tuesday vs. Los Angeles Clippers, 10 p.m., TNT; Wednesday vs. Denver, 10 p.m.
Theo Pinson, New York Knicks guard/forward
No game
Season statistics —
14 games, 2 points, 1–9 FG, 0–8 3FG, 2 rebounds, 1 assist
Up next — Tuesday vs. Charlotte, 7:30 p.m., BSSE; Wednesday vs. Atlanta 8 p.m.
Coby White, Chicago Bulls point guard
102–96 win at Boston — Started; 30 minutes, 19 points, 5–14 FG, 3–8 3FG, 6–6 FT, 3 rebounds, 7 assists, 1 steal, 1 block, 1 turnover, +3, 16.9 game score
Season statistics — 54 games, 14.4 points, 4.2 rebounds, 4.5 assists, 40.7FG%, 34.0%3P, 91.2 FT%
Up next — Wednesday at Cleveland, 7 p.m.; Thursday vs. Charlotte, 9 p.m., BSSE

What is a game score? Here is an exclamation.

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