Mike Dunleavy bloodied by elbow to eye, gets 10 stitches, returns to game (videos)
Chicago Bulls forward Mike Dunleavy displayed a level of toughness even members of his in-city brethren Blackhawks would appreciate. During the second quarter of Thursday night’s match-up with the Houston Rockets at United Center, Dunleavy was on the receiving end of a vicious blow to the eye courtesy of the elbow of Chandler Parsons.
After writhing on the court for a moment or two, Dunleavy sat up and immediately headed back to the Bulls locker room as blood poured down from above his right eye. He looked like a boxer who just took a savage beating.
And, to switch sports again, just like a hockey player, Dunleavy got stitched-up — 10 of them — and returned to the court in the second half.
Dunleavy then put on a bravado performance, scoring all of his 21 points after the injury to lead Chicago to a 111-87 victory, handing Houston its second straight loss.
“I just knew once they got the stitches done I was coming back,” he said, according to an AP report. “It was a pretty tough hit. My neck is sore — there’s some whiplash-type stuff — and we’re a little concerned about that, but overall, obviously, I felt pretty good in the second half.
“The hit knocked a little sense into me, I guess.”
Indeed it did. Center Joakim Noah, who scored 13 points, snagged 10 rebounds and dished out 9 assists, was impressed with the toughness exhibited by Dunleavy, joking that it helped the street cred of Duke, where Dunleavy starred in college.
“I think it inspired the team,” Noah said. “He had a huge knot on his head looking like (Evander) Holyfield, the white version, coming out there putting on a new jersey, gutting it out in the second half shows, it was good for Duke’s street credibility.
“It was very impressive. It shows a lot about the character of this team. … I’ve never seen nothing like that, to get rocked like he got rocked.”
[New York Post, image via @cjzero]