Chicago Bulls (7-23) vs Oklahoma City Thunder (18-10)Date : 12/17/2018
Time : 8:00 pm EST
Location : Chesapeake Energy Arena, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
Pick, Prediction, & Preview:
Chicago Bulls vs Oklahoma City Thunder
The Chicago Bulls will travel to Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma to face the Oklahoma City Thunder on Monday night at 8 p.m. Eastern Standard Time. The Bulls are coming off a confidence-building victory over the San Antonio Spurs on the road due to a 98-93 score as the Bulls came back from a 19-point deficit at the half in which to outscore the Spurs by a total of 55 – 31 to rally for the much-needed victory, thus halting a three-game losing streak.
On the other hand, the Oklahoma City Thunder have lost three of their last five games, total, as they picked up a win versus the Los Angeles Clippers in their last outing as Paul George score 33 points while Jeremy Grant along with Steven Adams chipped in 18 and 16 points, respectively. The under has been the play in five of the last seven meetings amongst these teams, altogether.
Chicago Bulls's Latest Performance :
In all, the offense for the Bulls ranks next-to-last within the NBA in points scored with only 103 per game on just 44% shooting. In their last six games total, the Bulls have decreased this offensive output as they have only reached a 100-point mark in only two of those games, overall. In their last matchup versus the San Antonio Spurs, however, the Bulls were able to pull out a uncharacteristic win yet failed to crack the 100-point mark as they picked up a slim 98-93 win over the Spurs on the road as they rallied in the second half after being down 19 points in which to heavily outscore the Spurs while allowing them only to shoot 43% from the field.
San Antonio committed a costly 15 turnovers throughout the contest while only shooting 43% themselves en route to the loss. Chicago also recorded 12 steals while also having seven blocks during the game as Lauri Markkanen accounted for two of those blocks as he ended the game with 23 points along with eight rebounds while ending at 3-8 from long range. On the other hand, Kris Dunn went 11-19 from the floor while pumping in 24 points and seven rebounds while Zach LaVine was sidelined due to an ankle injury for Chicago.
Nonetheless, Chicago continues to struggle on the offensive while the defense continues to be the tip of the spear in allowing them to remain competitive within games recently. Look for their defense to establish themselves early in this matchup vs a Thunder team that will soon break out of a early-season offensive slump; Yet, they will be met with their fair share of issues versus a Bulls defense that has been stingy, as of late.
Oklahoma City Thunder's Latest Performance :
The Oklahoma City Thunder desperately needed a win versus the Los Angeles Clippers in the last outing as they entered the game being up and down on both ends of the floor in their two games prior. When it was all said and done, Oklahoma City put in a great performance as they shot 46% from the field along with connecting on nine of 22 attempts from three-point range as Paul George scored 33 points, as stated, along with having seven rebounds along with six assists while Jerami Grant and Steven Adams also chipped in the offensive effort in having 18 and 16 points, respectively, with Adams pulling down five rebounds.
Russell Westbrook struggled from the field, yet againm in this contest as he went 4 of 17 for the night while ending with 13 points along with nine rebounds and 12 assists in the much-needed victory for the Thunder. The Thunder however, allowed the Clippers to shoot over 50% both from the field as well as from the floor on the night as Danilo Gallinari along with Tobias Harris led the team with 28 along with 22 points while pulling down a combined 16 rebounds during the contest. Montrez Harrell continued to provide a lift off the bench as he pumped in 21 points for Los Angeles in a losing effort.
While the Clippers were able to outrebound the Thunder by a slim 44-40 margin, they committed 26 turnovers on the night while the Thunder racked up 26 assists along with 13 steals and 7 blocks in the victory. And while the Thunder’s defense has been just as solid as ever throughout their rough patch, the offense has certainly been the catalyst in them losing three of their last five games, overall. With that being the case, look for the Thunder to certainly get back on track versus a Chicago team that continues to have their fair share of struggles on the offensive end, yet, their defense remains to be solid in their last three games as they are only allowing teams to put up an average of 97 points, total.
How Chicago Bulls & Oklahoma City Thunder Matchup.
Vegas Odds, Offshore Odds, & Odds ATS:
Chicago is 14-16 ATS while the OU is 9 – 20
Oklahoma City is 15 – 13 ATS while the OU is 12 – 16
In-Depth Analysis of each team:
Look for this game to be an interesting one in that Chicago will be trying to neutralize an offense for the Thunder that has been up and down lately. On the other hand, the road team will also be looking to obtain more offensive production from players other than Markkanen and Dunn versus an Oklahoma City squad that remains to be solid on the defensive end. Russell Westbrook will also be chomping at the bit in which to come out of his shooting slump as well in a matchup that will certainly be very competitive throughout.
Against The Spread Selection: Pick: Oklahoma City Thunder
My reason for the pick :
I have no doubt that Chicago will certainly come to play defense in this matchup vs a struggling offensive team in Oklahoma City at this point in the season. Nonetheless, I will back the home team in this matchup as the Thunder are not only 4 – 0 in their last four home games, overall, but, continue to possess one of the most dangerous offenses in the NBA, in my opinion. With that being the case, look for the Thunder to pick up their second straight win versus a Chicago team that has not scored 100 or more points in four of their last five road games, overall.
Totals Selection: Pick: Under
My reason for the prediction :
I would not look for the Chicago offense to score many points in this matchup. As stated, the team has only scored over 100 points in the only one of their last five road games. With that being the case, look for Oklahoma City to put some points on the board while neutralizing an already inconsistent offense for Chicago throughout this game as the under will certainly be the strong play.
Betting trends for Chicago Bulls:
- Under is 4-0 in Bulls last 4 games following a straight up win.
Under is 4-0 in Bulls last 4 road games vs. a team with a home winning % of greater than .600.
Under is 5-0-1 in Bulls last 6 games playing on 1 days rest.
Betting trends for Oklahoma City Thunder:
- Thunder are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 games playing on 1 days rest.
Thunder are 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games overall.
Over is 5-1 in Thunder last 6 Monday games.