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McDermott trying to block out trade talk

LAS VEGAS -- Chicago Bulls rookie Doug McDermott is learning very quickly about the business side of basketball.

In recent weeks, the Bulls' first-round draft pick has seen his name surface in trade rumors that would send him to the Minnesota Timberwolves, along with other pieces, in exchange for star big man Kevin Love. McDermott, who is a member of the USA Select team practicing against the USA national team this week, admits that he is getting asked about the trade talk a lot these days.

"To be honest, I get asked about it," he said. "I don't really ask anyone. I try and stay off Twitter, and I think a lot of people ask me, text me, some of my friends, but I just ignore it, and whatever happens, happens."

The speculation regarding McDermott's future intensified after his stellar performance in the Vegas Summer League earlier this month when he averaged 18 points a game and showed his shooting range. But the 22-year-old McDermott is trying to take all the talk in stride.

"I didn't really pay attention to it much," he said. "I think rumors happen a lot. There's been a lot this offseason. So you just got to stay patient, you can't really read into that stuff. I'm just focused on what I can do to become better."

What that means is that McDermott will continue to make a bigger name for himself by doing what he did throughout college: knock down jumpers. His close friend and fellow Creighton alumnus Kyle Korver believes McDermott is mature enough to handle anything that's thrown at him.

"He takes the game very serious," Korver said. "He plays with a chip on his shoulder. He plays with an edge. He wants to be really good, and he's going to work for it. He doesn't just want it. He wants to work for it. He's got a great skill set, obviously, in how he can shoot and how he sees the floor. He dealt with every kind of defense [in college]. He's been prepared for the NBA in so many ways just in how he was guarded all the time, the pressure that was on him in Omaha at Creighton. He's a younger guy, but emotionally he's very mature."

McDermott is just trying to enjoy the experience of playing with some of the best players in the game this week in Vegas.

"It's definitely a challenge, but it can only help a guy like me who's getting his NBA career started," McDermott said.