Former Pioneer Playing with Bulls

A former Oak Ridge basketball player scored his first basket Thursday in his NBA debut.

Antonio Blakeney, a 2015 graduate, survived the NBA’s final roster cuts and secured a spot on the Chicago Bulls, where he signed as a free agent after no team selected him last June in the NBA Draft.

Blakenely played one minute and made a shot in Chicago’s 117-100 loss to the Toronto Raptors.

Blakeney impressed in the summer league and again in the preseason, and that was enough to convince the Bulls to give him one of the team’s 15 roster spots. If he had been cut from the roster, Blakeney would have been transferred to the NBA G League, a development league for hopeful NBA players.