Doug McDermott: Need to figure out D if I want to stay on the floor

McDermott is focused on improving his defense.
Rocky Widner/NBAE/Getty Images

Doug McDermott has gotten off to a hot shooting start in his second season with the Bulls, so much so that he supplanted Tony Snell in the team's starting lineup.

But despite his strong offensive performance, McDermott knows that unless he can become at least serviceable on the defensive end, the amount of minutes he plays will always have a ceiling.

“The main thing is I'm really trying to get better defensively in practice,” he said. “It's been tough. They call me for a lot of fouls. I guarded a lot of (power forwards) in college. I'm guarding (small forwards) who are athletic here. I'm going to have to figure it out if I want to stay on the floor.”

That may be overstating matters a bit. Shooting and spacing are both critical for Fred Hoiberg's offensive philosophy and McDermott provides both.

And this is actually a slightly different offensive role for McDermott, whose prolific scoring at Creighton came in a wide variety of ways.

“In college, I posted up a bunch, faced up. That was more my game,” McDermott said. “I've had to translate my game a bit to shoot 3s and hit floaters. That's something I can do for this team hopefully for a long time.”

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