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Memphis Grizzlies at Chicago Bulls
NBA: Wednesday, February 13, 2019, United Center, Chicago, Illinois, 8:00 PM ET
The inter-conference foes will meet at the United Center on Wednesday when the Memphis Grizzlies take on the Chicago Bulls, hoping to get the fourth victory in five games and second since they parted ways with Marc Gasol, while the hosts are looking to avoid the third consecutive defeat and the 12th straight in front of their own crowd. Chicago has been a better rival when it comes to the recent H2H duels as they won three of the last four meetings and the previous one at the United Center.
Memphis Grizzlies beat New Orleans thanks to great defense in the second and third quarter
Memphis was on a two-game winning run when the Oklahoma City Thunder prevented them from getting the third in a row but the Grizzlies quickly bounced back in the following clash with the New Orleans Pelicans. The Grizzlies improved to the 23-34 record and are currently sitting in the 14th position in the Western Conference with 17 wins behind the conference leaders Golden State Warriors, seven wins behind the Sacramento Kings who are in the 8th place, and 12 wins more than the bottom-placed Phoenix Suns.
Joakim Noah led the Grizzlies in a 99-90 win over the Pelicans with a double-double of 19 points and team-high 14 rebounds; Justin Holiday added 15 points and five boards, Jaren Jackson Jr. had 14 points and a couple of steals, while Ivan Rabb and Mike Conley combined for 21 points, 15 rebounds, and 12 dimes. Memphis lost the opening quarter by eight points but they displayed excellent defense in the second and third quarter, allowing only 34 points to New Orleans, while they limited Anthony Davis to just 14 points. The Grizzlies forced the Pelicans to miss 27 attempts from downtown (6-33) and committed five turnovers fewer than the visitors (10-15).
— NBA (@NBA) February 10, 2019
Jonas Valanciunas did not practice with the team on Tuesday and is it unknown if he will be able to make his Memphis debut Tuesday vs. the Spurs but he could play against Chicago on Wednesday, while Kyle Anderson (right shoulder) has been ruled out for the tilt with the Bulls.
The Grizzlies have the worst offense in the NBA that averages 100.3 points per contest, while their defense is in top 5 in the league as it allows 103.4 points per game (2nd). Memphis’ rebounding is way below average as they are recording 40.5 boards per game (29th), while they are better when it comes to assists per contest with 23.4 dishes a night (20th). Memphis is 25th in field goal percentage as they have 44.9 percent from the floor and 27th from downtown with 33.8 percentage, while they are 30th in the NBA with 9.3 three-pointers made per game.
Chicago Bulls’ offense could cope with Milwaukee’s sturdy defense
Chicago surprised the Brooklyn Nets with a road victory but they returned home and lost the next two games to the Washington Wizards and Milwaukee Bucks. The Bulls dropped to the 13-44 record and are in the 13th place in the Eastern Conference with even 29 wins behind the conference leaders Milwaukee Bucks, 13 behind the Detroit Pistons who are in the 8th position, and three wins more than the last-placed New York Knicks.
Zach LaVine led the Bulls in a 112-99 loss to the Bucks with 27 points, team-high seven assists, and five rebounds; Lauri Markkanen posted a double-double of 20 points and game-high 17 boards, and a pair of steals, Otto Porter Jr. contributed with 18 points, seven rebounds, and four dishes, while Robin Lopez ended the tilt with 17 points and four boards. Chicago stayed close in the opening half as they trailed by just one point at halftime but Milwaukee played well in the second half, while their defense also did a part in a win, limiting the Bulls to 38.5 percent from the floor. The Bucks hit 12 triples in opposite to Chicago’s nine and made eight free throws more than the hosts, while the visitors also dominated the blocks (7-2).
In today’s Daily Check In, @ctsbulls recaps last night’s game including key Bulls performances from Zach LaVine (27-5-7), Lauri Markkanen (20-17 & his fourth straight double-double), Otto Porter Jr (18pts) and Robin Lopez (17pts).
— Chicago Bulls (@chicagobulls) February 12, 2019
The Bulls have the 28th offense in the NBA that averages 102.8 points per contest, while their defense is the 18th in the league as it allows 111.6 points per game. Chicago’s rebounding is below average as they are recording 42.1 boards per game (26th), while they are not better when it comes to assists per contest with 21.9 dishes a night (27th). Chicago is 24th in field goal percentage as they have 44.9 percent from the floor and 13th from downtown with 35.3 percentage, while they are 28th in the NBA with 9.4 three-pointers made per game.
- 22-19-2 ATS in the last 43 games played after 2-3 days off
- 21-20-2 ATS in the last 43 games after a loss
- 3-8 ATS in their last 11 vs. NBA Central rivals
- 4-12 ATS in their last 16 games played on the road
- 3-11 ATS in their last 14 vs. Eastern Conference rivals
- 2-10 ATS in their last 12 games playing without a rest
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Chicago won six out of the previous ten H2H encounters including three out of the last four, while the Bulls were victorious in two of the past three meetings at the United Center. Memphis is playing the second of back-to-back games and I expect the visitors to be tired in the second half, which would be a great opportunity for the young Bulls to finally snap their negative run at home and avoid the 13th consecutive defeat in front of their own crowd. The Grizzlies will rely on their defense but with the exception of the latest tilt with Milwaukee, Chicago’s offense has been playing well lately and I am backing them to prevail in this one.
Prediction: Chicago Bulls -2 (-110)
Full-Game Total Pick
Memphis do have a better defense and their strong D has the ability to frustrate the hosts but the Grizzlies will have some tired legs in the second half of this clash and that could reflect on their defensive aggressiveness. I expect them to be more lenient in the second 24 minutes and I am going with over because over is 3-1-1 in the last five H2H meetings; over is 4-1 in Bulls previous five overall, while over is 12-5 in Grizzlies last 17 vs. a team with a losing straight up record. Also, over is 12-5-1 in Grizzlies last 18 vs. NBA Central opponents; over is 4-0 in Bulls previous four vs. a team with a losing straight up record, while over is 7-2 in Bulls last nine vs. Western Conference rivals.
Prediction: Over 207.5 (-110)
Full-Game Prop Bet
Chicago was up at halftime in three of their previous five games, while Memphis had even more success in the opening 20 minutes lately as they had a lead after the opening 24 minutes in four of the last five games. I expect the Grizzlies to struggle in the second half and I am backing them to play better in the first half and cover the +1 spread. They don’t have to be up to help us win the bet as we will make profit in case we don’t have a winner of the first half.
Prediction: Memphis Grizzlies +1 (-110)
Half-Time Side Pick
The total is set at 105.5 and even though I backed over in the end of this tilt, I am going with under in the first half as I expect the visitors to display a solid defensive performance and limit the Bulls as much as possible. Both rivals will likely score around 50 points apiece but I do expect to see more points in the second 24 minutes.
Prediction: Under 105.5 (-110)