The Chicago Bulls open as betting underdogs for the fourth consecutive game as they welcome the 3-0 Boston Celtics to the United Center.
The 1-2 Chicago Bulls have a tough assignment ahead of them tonight as they look to bounce back after Saturday night’s ugly 128-96 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers. Zach LaVine was welcomed back into the lineup Saturday, and appeared seemingly unbothered by his knee ailments, as he recorded 23 points on 9-17 shooting. His running mate, Demar Derozan, did not see the same efficiency, regressing from two 30-point outings to open the season down to 13 points on 3-9 shooting.
Saturday night’s loss also saw the first loss of the year our best bet of the day blogs, with Ayo Dosunmu failing to record an assist for the final two halves of the game, keeping us under his 3.5 assist total. We are switching things up in tonight’s case, and for the first time this year will be playing the Bulls on the spread, potentially to the surprise of many. It’s going to take a full team effort, but this Chicago Bulls team has had success against the spread against Boston under Billy Donovan and could have a positive matchup. Let’s get this back on track tonight, and GO BULLS!
Chicago Bulls +6 (Sportsbook odds may vary)
It may come as a surprise to many to see the Chicago Bulls as the best bet of the day following a slow start to the season, and now facing the defending Eastern Conference Champion Boston Celtics, but for a handful of factors, this does seem like a great spot to play the Bulls on the spread.
As far as gambling indicators go, a 3-0 Celtics team with wins over Philadelphia and Miami has driven the public perception of this Boston team through the roof off the heels of a deep playoff run over the summer. Pair that with a 1-2 Chicago Bulls team coming off of a blowout loss, and on the surface you would expect this line to be an eight point or higher spread. Having paid attention to this Celtics team dating back to their surge last year, if the oddsmakers thought Boston was going to roll to an easy one, this line would be noticeably higher.
The bets and money percentages reflect my thoughts on this one being a little too good to be true as well, as the Celtics are receiving nearly 70% of bets and money, despite the line either sticking right at 6 points, or in some locations even dropping to 5.5, making it even easier for Boston to cover, enticing even more bettors over to the Celtics side.
To give you a ‘how and why’ path to the Bulls covering this game, unlike Saturday’s loss to Cleveland, this Chicago Bulls roster matches up to this Boston team quite a bit better defensively, presumably allowing the Bulls to hang within striking distance. Over the last five meetings between these teams, Chicago has covered four of five, including an early season outright win last November. Without any ball-dominant, undersized guards to torment the Bulls guards on the defensive end, Chicago has managed to make these games very competitive.
High-level scoring guards have been a nightmare for Chicago during Lonzo Ball’s absence, and while I’m not suggesting Jaysom Tatum and Jaylen Brown won’t be effective tonight, I’m suggesting the Bulls at least have a more well-matched toolbox to throw at them. Tonight will be a great test of Patrick Williams‘ impact to the game, as the young wing-player has been largely absent from the offensive end of the floor, but has earned a starting role for his defensive prowess. His efforts have been questioned through three games, but will have to make a true impact if the Bulls expect to compete tonight.
The third quarter may prove to be the decider for this contest as both of these teams have a perfect 3-0 record in the third quarter of each of their games. The Chicago Bulls rank 2nd in the NBA through three games in third quarter points allowed, proving to have shown positive adjustments out of halftime on the defensive end. Boston has shown similar improvements offensively out of halftime, as they rank third in the same category offensively. If the third quarter is dominated by either team tonight, you can expect the final score to reflect it.
Best of luck tonight and Go Bulls! I will see you Wednesday night for the Bulls home meeting with the Indiana Pacers.
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