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Player evaluations: The surprise and delight of Ayo Dosunmu

Will Gottlieb Avatar
May 27, 2022

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Here at CHGO, we’re kicking off the Bulls summer with evaluations of each individual player’s season.

Today, we’re looking into Ayo Dosunmu’s Second Team All Rookie campaign.

Core stats:

Box stats per game:
  • 8.8 points
  • 2.8 rebounds
  • 3.3 assists
  • 0.8 steals
  • 0.4 blocks
Shooting splits:
  • 59.6 percent on 2- point field goals
  • 37.6 percent on 3-point field goals
  • 67.9 percent on free throws
  • 59.6 true shooting percentage
Advanced metrics:

These overall advanced stats are another piece of the puzzle to add context when evaluating players. Check out this article to learn more about each metric.

Performance review

Dosunmu was the most surprising Bulls performer this side of DeMar DeRozan. Thrust into minutes after Patrick Williams injury in game five of the regular season, Dosunmu immediately earned Billy Donovan’s trust and captured a rotation role the rest of the season.

Dosunmu also flexed more on-ball capability that gave him more opportunity to play when Lonzo Ball and Alex Caruso missed time due to injury.

Dosunmu’s 18-game stretch from when Ball got injured on January 14 to the All-Star Break, he averaged 11.8 points, 4.2 rebounds, 6.8 assists, 1.3 steals while shooting 52.8 percent from the field, 39.7 percent on threes and 83.3 percent at the line. He was locking down everyone from Trae Young and Ja Morant to Luka Doncic and Jayson Tatum.

Eventually, the wheels started to fall off for Dosunmu as teams began scouting him more aggressively and the sheer amount of minutes he played seemed to overwhelm him. That trend continued into the playoffs where he barely played in the two competitive games.

Though the advanced metrics don’t love him, his ability to step into a larger role when called upon was a huge asset for the Bulls. And it ended up netting him a spot on the NBA’s Second All-Rookie Team.


At this point, Dosunmu is not just good for a second round pick. He’s just good period. There are no questions about Dosunmu’s future as a Bull — only how good he becomes. As a 22-year old, his three year college experience clearly helped him come into the league prepared. He clearly understands the game at a high level, which game him a leg up when he was thrust into heavy minutes.

Dosunmu’s areas of focus during the offseason should be shooting mechanics, agility and conditioning. In an ideal world, the Bulls won’t have to deal with so many injuries going forward and Dosunmu will be used more regularly as a floor spacer and secondary attacker. With a faster and more consistent release, he’ll be able to hit around 40 percent of his threes and pump up the volume with more confidence.

Dosunmu was a complete iron man for the Bulls, but the difference between a 30-game college season and an 82-game NBA season is dramatic. Especially when his role was to defend the opposition’s best player and initiate the offense. Better conditioning and more efficient movement will go a long way toward helping him play at a higher level across the entire season.

From a roster-building perspective, hitting on draft picks is incredibly difficult, especially in the second round of the draft. Getting a high-end backup guard who can spot-start and play heavy minutes can be a franchise-altering move. The fact that he is from Chicago, played at University of Illinois and is now a fixture of the Bulls rotation makes it that much sweeter.

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