Philadelphia 76ers at Chicago Bulls Preview
Tonight at United Center, the Chicago Bulls will host the Philadelphia 76ers. Chicago last played on Wednesday night in which they narrowly beat the Wizards 115-114. Chicago has gone 16-33 against Eastern Conference teams this season, and have been 8-8 in games decided by less than 4 points.
On the other hand, Philadelphia is coming off a tough loss to the number 1 seeded Milwaukee Bucks. The Sixers have dropped three in a row and have only won two of their last seven games. On Friday, Philadelphia clinched home-court advantage in the first round when the Boston Celtics beat the Indiana Pacers. Mathematically, there’s no chance Philly could play Boston in the first round, so they could opt to rest players in order to fall to the fourth seed. That way, they’ll face a banged up Pacer team that more than likely won’t be able to compete with the 76ers star power.
This season series is currently tied at two teams at a game apiece, but both teams will see each other again on Wednesday in what will be both team’s last game of the season.
Time: 8:00 pm ET
Arena: United Center, Chicago, IL
Channel: NSP+, NBATV, WGN
Philadelphia 76ers Starting Lineup
Philadelphia is 5-5 in their last 10 games while looking to lock down their playoff seeding. Joel Embiid has averaged 32.8 points and 14.2 rebounds per game in that 10-game stretch, even though he missed the first eight games after the All-Star break before returning against Indiana on March 10. Tobias Harris has contributed 17.3 points plus 7.8 rebounds a night while shooting 44.4 percent from the floor. Big contributions have also come from the 76ers high profile players. Jimmy Butler is averaging 18.4 points, 6.5 rebounds, 4.4 assists, while Ben Simmons is putting up 16 points, 8.1 rebounds, 8.1 assists, on 54.2 percent shooting.
Tonight, Embiid and Butler will be questionable. Embiid is dealing with a knee issue while Butler may just be looking to get some rest with the playoffs upcoming. Butler also missed Thursday’s loss to the Milwaukee with the back tightness while Embiid was already questionable heading into that game.
Philadelphia clinched home-court advantage in the first round when the Boston Celtics beat the Indiana Pacers on Friday. Mathematically, there’s also no chance Philly could play Boston in the first round, so they could opt to rest players in order to fall to the fourth seed. That way, they’ll face a banged up Pacer team that more than likely won’t be able to compete with the star power of the 76ers.
Chicago Bulls Starting Lineup
In the last 10 games, Chicago is tied for 24th in the league in scoring offense with 107 points a game. In that stretch, they’ve been 3-7 mostly due to a bunch of injuries. Lauri Markkanen, Wendell Carter Jr. and Chandler Hutchison are all done for the year, making Robin Lopez the team’s leading scorer during that stretch, averaging 14 points while shooting 59.6 percent from the floor.
Zach LaVine has led the team in scoring in each of the first two meetings this year against Philadelphia. However, he’s been ruled out due to a thigh contusion and patellar tendonitis. Kris Dunn is also doubtful due to a bad back and Otto Porter will be out with a shoulder injury.
Philadelphia 76ers at Chicago Bulls Betting Odds
The Philadelphia 76ers are 9-point favorites tonight on the road. They have a road record of 19-20 this season and have gone 39-17 when favored. The Bulls have a 9-30 home record this season and are 19-54 when underdogs.
The over/under is 227 points with Philly being -420 on the moneyline. The moneyline has fluctuated since it opened and is continuing to do so.
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