Tonight cross-Conference matchup will offer us a match between Chicago Bulls and LA Clippers at United Center, home of Chicago Bulls.
Chicago Bulls are currently 6th in the East with a record of 31-30. Looking at their last 5 matches, they are holding a 4-1 record, wining against GSW (94:87), Cavaliers (99:117), Suns (128:121)(OT) and Celtics (104:103). Sadly they did not manage to do the same against Denver (107:125). With their recent performances, winning against one of the best teams in the NBA this season I see a lot of potential in Bulls to keep on with great showings. The recent match against Golden State Warriors started with GSW holding a lead till 2nd half. 1st quarter ended with a 7 point lead by GSW (19:26), which was reduced to 4 with a good performance by Bulls in 2nd half (28:25). 3rd quarter was a shock for everyone, especially Golden State, as they were outscored by 10 points. Bulls defensive line did their job, holding GSW at 42.9% shooting accuracy, whereas they managed to shoot 52% themselves. With 6 point lead, Bulls went into last 12 minutes with a calm head and everything was on GSW side to outshine the home side and reclaim their lead. 4th quarter was a quarter where defence of both sides showed their worth. Bulls held a poor 25% shooting accuracy, with GSW not doing much better job in that aspect (26.1%). It’s without a need to say it was a low scoring quarter (15:14) thanks to both teams defence. With that GSW failed to get back into the match and lost their 2nd away game in a row. Top scorers of the match: Curry (23pts), Butler (22pts) and Portis (17pts) All in all Bulls are racking up great showings and if they can win against GSW, Celtics and Cavaliers, there is a question; where will they stop?
Today’s visitors are LA Clippers, who on contrary to Bulls do not have a great record behind them. Clippers lost 4 games out of last 5 played. Bucks (112:101), Rockets (103:122), Spurs (97:105) and GSW (123:113) all proven to be too strong for Clippers, whereas they managed to win against Hornets (124:121) after OT. Prior to those 5 games, Clippers held a 4-1 record, but it seems as their form went south. Looking at the match against Bucks, Clippers were behind by 15 points only after first 12 minutes (34:19). The margin only grew bigger in 2nd quarter (32:28). In 3rd quarter we could see Clippers stepping up their game and outscoring Bucks by 10 points (19:29). They can thank Bucks defence for that, as Clippers had a 70.6% accuracy from the field with 5 three-pointers (83.3% 3-Point FG). Clippers great showing in 3rd quarter, sadly did not translate into last 12 minutes, where Bucks added another 2 points to their lead (27:25). Shooting wise, both teams had a great FG%; Both teams with 56.3 FG%. Top scorers of the match: Monroe (24pts), Antetokounmpo (24pts) and Paul (21pts).
Verdict & Prediction
Both teams will go into this match without 1 man. Bulls will be without Carter-Williams, on the other side, Clippers will miss Stone. Bulls will have an advantage of home court and 1 extra day to rest compared to Clippers, who are coming into this match straight after their game against Bucks. For me, Bulls are a better team here, despite losing their last 2 encounters against LA Clippers. With that in mind I believe giving Bulls 3 point advantage should be enough for them to add another win to their record.
Prediction: Chicago Bulls +3
Odds: 1.88 Pinnacle