The Chicago Bulls hosted the San Antonio Spurs on Monday night at the United Center and it was an opportunity for DeMar DeRozan to rekindle some old flames with his former team. The Spurs are a different squad from when he left a couple of years ago but there’s definitely one thing that remains: DeRozan has a lot of love for former coach Gregg Popovich.
The feeling is mutual too, and this was clearly on display when the pair met at center court right before tipoff:
DeMar DeRozan and Gregg Popovich embrace before tipoff in Chicago 🫂
DeRozan played for Popovich on the Spurs for three years ❤️pic.twitter.com/3DzfHklmQS
— ClutchPoints (@ClutchPointsApp) February 7, 2023
Unfortunately, we can’t hear exactly what was said between the two, but I believe coach Pop’s first words to DeMar were “My man!” DeRozan spent just three years under Popovich’s tutelage with the Spurs, but it is clear that he holds a lot of respect for his former coach. The pair exchanged a warm and heartfelt hug in what was an endearing moment between coach and ex-player.
For his part, DeMar DeRozan is having quite a season with the Bulls this year. He’s actually having one of the best campaigns of his career behind averages of 26.0 points on 51.1 percent shooting, 4.9 rebounds, 5.0 assists, and 1.0 steals per game. The 33-year-old’s strong play earned him a spot on the All-Star team for the sixth time in his career. What also cannot be denied is that coach Popovich is happy for DeMar and that the Spurs coach is extremely proud of what his former player has achieved this season.