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Bulls expected to bring energy into meeting with Pistons

Dec 28, 2022; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Bulls forward DeMar DeRozan (11) reacts against the Milwaukee Bucks in overtime at United Center. Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

The Chicago Bulls will look to ride the momentum of a victory over one of the NBA’s top teams into Friday night’s home game against the cellar-dwelling Detroit Pistons.

DeMar DeRozan had a huge hand in rallying the Bulls to their fourth win in five games on Wednesday night. He scored 10 points in overtime and finished with 42 overall in Chicago’s 119-113 victory against Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks.

The Bulls showed resolve by rallying from an 11-point deficit with less than three minutes to play in regulation.

“I guess the best bring out the best out of you,” said DeRozan, who boasts team-leading averages in points (26.5) and assists (5.0) for the season. … “We’ve got to carry that within and go out there and play like that every single night and not worry about we’re playing a good team, are we playing a not-so-good team and we’re going to run over them.

“We’ve got to play with that sense of urgency every single night, and nights like this we’ve got to turn into consistency.”

The Bulls should take that to heart, considering they lost 133-118 to the Houston Rockets — one of the worst teams in the NBA — on Monday.

On Wednesday, Zach LaVine made four 3-pointers for the second time in his last three games. Two of those came during the final minutes of regulation.

“We just kept fighting,” LaVine said. “Obviously, we were trying to man up and do everything we could to keep them off the boards; Giannis was attacking. We made big plays down the end and got to overtime and were able to put it away.”

The Bulls have won 11 straight contests against the Pistons. Detroit’s most recent victory over Chicago was on March 10, 2019.

The Pistons snapped a six-game skid overall with a 121-101 victory over the Orlando Magic on Wednesday.

Alec Burks made his first 10 shots from the floor and sank six 3-pointers to highlight his season-best 32-point performance. Saddiq Bey also drained six shots from beyond the arc to finish with a season-high-tying 28 points.

Hamidou Diallo collected 11 points and five rebounds off the bench before he joined teammate Killian Hayes and Orlando’s Moritz Wagner in being ejected for their roles in an ugly skirmish in the second quarter.

Before the game, Detroit coach Dwane Casey praised Diallo for the enthusiasm he brings when asked about the contributions of Diallo and former Kentucky teammate Kevin Knox II.

“Hami is outplaying Kevin right now,” Casey said. “Nothing huge — just Hami’s energy, his pace and making plays. Not orthodox in a lot of ways, but he gets it done. Right now, I love his energy. He stayed ready, and he’s taking advantage of that opportunity.”

Detroit’s Bojan Bogdanovic, who is averaging a team-leading 20.7 points, was limited to 14 on 4-of-14 shooting Wednesday. He is shooting just 35.1 percent from the floor over his past four games (20 of 57).

–Field Level Media