Zach LaVine is in the middle of a historically great offensive season, and there’s really no way around that. But because the Bulls have hovered below .500 most of the year and LaVine has a reputation that he is not necessarily a winning player, there was a lot of doubt over whether he would be named to the Eastern Conference All-Star team. Now that he has indeed made the team, though, Chicago is rightly pumping up their guy.
The team tricked LaVine into joining what he thought was a media availability session on Zoom, but was actually a collection of his friends and family members who had come together to wish him congratulations. His parents looked back on the work it took to get here, his mentor Jamal Crawford gave him praise for the dedication he’s shown since being a kid in the Pacific Northwest, and his little sister even called in during a dinner run to help ring in the big moment.
He thought he was doing a media call.
— Chicago Bulls (@chicagobulls) February 24, 2021
These are the people LaVine likely would have been around all season if not for the restrictions put in place during this pandemic season, so it had to be nice for LaVine to see them, even if it was virtual.
LaVine was also consistent that his work isn’t done, and when teammate Thaddeus Young chimed in on the call, the two doubled down on their goal of making the postseason with the Bulls this year. So while LaVine’s prolific scoring season (he’s averaging nearly 29 points per game on 52 percent shooting) is impressive, the All-Star game is just one reward on his journey toward proving he can be a winning player.