The Chicago Bulls (8-4) will try to get back on track as they face off with the streaking Los Angeles Clippers (8-4) late Sunday. This intriguing intra-conference battle at the Staples Center features two of the best defensive squads in the league. Both the Bulls and the Clippers rank in the top-6 on points allowed per game, holding their teams under 104 points per contest.
BetUS has already dropped the odds, with the Bulls seen as a four-point underdog to the Clippers.
Chicago Bulls vs Los Angeles Clippers Betting Lines and Odds
ATS: Bulls +4 (-110)
Moneyline: Bulls +150, Clippers -160
Chicago Bulls vs. Los Angeles Clippers Team News
Andrian Wojnarowski of ESPN said the NBA is now at the advanced stages of its inquiry into possible pre-free-agency tampering revolved on the sign-and-trade acquisitions of Chicago’s Lonzo Ball and Miami’s Kyle Lowry.
“The NBA has conducted numerous interviews with team executives and player agents and has gathered electronic messaging of front-office executives of four teams — Chicago, New Orleans, Miami and Toronto — over the past three months, sources said. The league could reveal its findings and any penalties in the near future,” Wojnarowski writes.
Should the NBA find out the Bulls were at fault, the team could be facing penalties, including a $10M fine, suspension of team executives, forfeiture of draft picks, and potential voiding of contracts.
Meanwhile, the Clippers seem to have finally found the form that pushed them two wins short of their first-ever NBA finals appearance. Paul George has been terrific throughout the stretch, but the Clips are also getting regular contributions from a mix of veterans and young role players. Terrence Mann, who had a breakout playoff run last year, said the veterans have made it easy for the young players to embrace the Clippers’ never-give-up mentality.
Chicago Bulls vs Los Angeles Clippers Injury Report
Bulls: Nikola Vucevic – OUT (COVID-19), Coby White – OUT (Shoulder), Patrick Williams – OUT (Thumb).
Clippers: Serge Ibaka – OUT (Undisclosed), Marcus Morris – OUT (Knee), Kawhi Leonard – OUT (Knee), Jason Preston – Questionable (Foot), Keon Johnson – Questionable (Ankle).
Chicago Bulls vs. Los Angeles Clippers Preview
Following a scintillating start, the Bulls have lost three of their last five games. On Friday, Chicago just had some rude awakening following a 119-93 loss to the Golden State Warriors. Zach Lavine tallied 23 points, and DeMar DeRozan added 18 points, but their efforts were not enough to offset Stephen Curry’s 40-point night. The Bulls, who averaged 37 percent from the 3PT range, converted only eight of his 27 shots from deep and shot 43.6 percent G overall.
Meanwhile, the Clippers cruised to their seventh straight win after shutting down Wolves star big man Karl-Anthony Towns. Los Angeles hounded Towns to just eight points on a 3-for-11 shooting. Paul George and Reggie Jackson combined for 43 points, while Terrence Mann added 16 markers off the bench.
Chicago Bulls vs Los Angeles Clippers Prediction
The Clippers have proven during this recent winning run that they are still an elite West squad, even without Kawhi Leonard. Paul George and the rest of the Clips will prove it again on Sunday when they smoother one of the most entertaining teams in the NBA. Led by Zach Lavine, DeMar DeRozan, and Lonzo Ball, the Bulls have lighted up every arena they play with showtime passes and dunks. The Clippers, who boast a 9-1 head-to-head record against the Bulls, might be just too much for this resurging East squad. Expect Los Angeles to cover the four-point spread behind another offensive explosion from Paul George and the Clips trademark suffocating defense. The total had gone OVER in five of their last six games; expect that trend to carry over in this game.
Chicago Bulls vs. Los Angeles Clippers Betting Pick
Pick: Clippers cover the spread, OVER
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Source: Basketball Insider