Billy Donovan on Bulls-Hawks and the importance of competitiveness

The Chicago Bulls and Atlanta Hawks are in a tight race to earn home-court advantage in the first game of the Play-In Tournament. Whoever finishes the season as the ninth seed in the Eastern Conference will get to welcome the other to their arena for the 9-10 game, where one team will move on and the other will see their season end.

Because of how tight the race is, the Bulls need to be fully focused every single night down the stretch of the season. They don’t have the luxury of some other teams who aren’t fighting for anything anymore. If they want to make the Hawks come to the United Center, they need to play hard every game.

Ahead of the Bulls’ game against the Hawks on Monday night, Billy Donovan spoke about this very topic. (H/t Annie Costabile of the Chicago Sun-Times)

“Probability-wise, there’s a likelihood we see each other again,” Donovan said. “All these games are important in terms of the competitiveness. I was pleased coming out of the Minnesota game just because of what happened. You knew they were going to make a run. I thought, when they got up, the guys did a great job of making the plays necessary to regain control of the game.”

Unfortunately, the Bulls lost to the Hawks on Monday, meaning their lead on Atlanta in the standings is now at just half a game.

Story originally appeared on Lonzo Wire