The Chicago Bears 2019 draft class couldn’t have gotten off to a better start in their careers. Against the Los Angeles Lakers in their first game of the NBA Summer League, Coby White and Daniel Gafford stole the show. It started from the opening seconds of the game when White found Gafford with an alley oop slam for the first points of the game. A moment that set the tone for everything that followed.
Chicago basically smothered L.A. for the entire game. Their defense held the Lakers to 29.6% shooting from the floor and outrebounded them 35 to 24. Gafford was the star of the night. He went 9-of-10 from the field for 21 points with 10 rebounds and four blocks. The 2nd round pick certainly didn’t look like one. White was no slouch either.
The 7th overall choice ran the floor well with 17 points and 3 assists. Unfortunately, he really struggled from 3-point land, going 0-for-7. Shaquille Harrison also seems to be making strides. He looks far better than he did this time last year, scoring 14 points with 6 rebounds. One of the bigger surprises of the night?
Undrafted free agent Adam Mokoka had 10 points and 8 rebounds while proving his prowess as a defender.
Coby White and Daniels Gafford showed why Bulls drafted them
Everything that the Bulls and many experts liked about White and Gafford were on display in this game. White’s energy, effort, and ability to distribute the ball. Gafford’s size, length, athleticism, and versatile skill set. As per usual both players have plenty to work on. White has to keep working on his shooting stroke. Gafford must hone his discipline on both ends of the court.
That said, the 96-76 bashing of the Lakers was a welcome first indication the Bulls pipeline of young talent is rich. Not just White and Gafford but Harrison, Mokoka, and Walter Lemon Jr. all showed signs of promise. It remains to be seen whether Jim Boylen and his staff can cultivate this talent properly. If they do, then Chicago may soon have one of the deeper rosters in the NBA.