NEW YORK — Before the Bulls traveled to New York this week, coach Billy Donovan pulled apart Alex Caruso and made an unlikely comparability.

He likened Caruso to Udonis Haslem, the Miami Heat’s 19-year staple who many moons in the past performed for Donovan at Florida for 4 years. To Donovan, it was the last word praise if not a pure connection: Caruso, the Bulls’ 6-foot-4 glue stick of a degree guard, and Haslem, now 41 and rarely used however as soon as a rugged 6-foot-8 huge man.

Donovan wasn’t referring to their taking part in kinds. He was spotlighting their paths. How each refused rejection by the NBA. The approach every turned disappointment on his draft evening — Haslem going undrafted in 2002 and Caruso following go well with in 2016 — into gasoline for an already raging inside hearth.

“I thought Udonis Haslem was by far the best low-post offensive player in college. I mean, he was a monster,” Donovan mentioned. “But when he got to the NBA, he couldn’t do that. And he reinvented himself. He was a guy that never shot, but he impacted the game just through his toughness and his competitiveness.

“I think guys that are smart that maybe you don’t look at as being overly talented, those are the guys that stick and last a long time. Because as a coach or watching us play, you see the value he brings every night.”

Caruso, 27, plans to stay. That’s why despite the fact that he talks like a coach and infrequently is described as “a coach on the floor,” Caruso recoils at questions on a potential teaching future.



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