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Video: Bulls’ Lauri Markkanen throws down nasty putback slam

During Sunday’s game against the Detroit Pistons, Chicago Bulls forward Lauri Markkanen flashed a bit of his athleticism with a nasty putback dunk that left the Pistons’ home crowd gasping:

After a missed attempt by Shaquille Harrison, Markkanen cut to the rim, snatched the ball with his left hand, and slammed the ball down. The slam by Markkanen was just a taste of the athleticism the young forward has to offer, and he has been a shining spot for Bulls fans in an otherwise sad season.

Despite the poor season for the Bulls, it has been an encouraging one for many of their young players, including Markkanen and Zach LaVine, who has begun to show flashes of being a potential star for the Bulls. As for Markkanen, his 2018-19 campaign got off to a rough start due to an elbow injury, but he has shown a lot as he has gotten healthy.

With a full offseason to prepare, Markkanen might finally be ready to become the player the Bulls thought they were getting when they drafted him two years ago. Coming into next season armed with another high draft pick, the Bulls may finally be ready to make noise in the Eastern Conference.

While the putback slam was an incredible athletic effort by Markkanen, it looks like it’s going to be for naught. Chicago entered the fourth quarter down 103-80. The Pistons (33-31) are playing for a chance at getting into the playoffs, while the Bulls (19-48) seem to be headed toward another top draft pick.