Game: New York Knicks @ Chicago Bulls
Time: 7:30 p.m.
Odds: Knicks +4, Bulls -4
The New York Knicks and Chicago Bulls loved getting two days off even if it was for different reasons. The Knicks, who have won four straight, are hoping to get point guard Jalen Brunson back from a foot injury. The Bulls, who have lost four of their last six games, are hoping to rebound from a heartbreaking 123-122 loss to Atlanta in overtime. Now, the two teams will meet in Chicago tonight.
The Knicks beat Sacramento 112-99 on Sunday night to win their fourth in a row. That win put New York above .500 (14-13) for the first time since Nov. 16. The Knicks are now sixth in the Eastern Conference standings and their four-game winning streak is the team’s longest since the beginning of last season.
Plus, the Knicks have beaten teams that are currently in the running for a playoff or play-in spot. Only four of New York’s first 10 victories came against opposition that was already guaranteed a playoff or play-in spot. Under head coach Tom Thibodeau, New York prides itself on being a defensively-minded team and has given up 102 points or less in each of its last four games. The Knicks had allowed 102 or less just once before their current win streak.
It’s also worth noting that the Knicks have won four straight without its best lineup. Forward Obi Toppin broke his right fibula on Dec. 7 while playing against the Atlanta Hawks. He is anticipated to be sidelined until at least Christmas. Against the Kings, Brunson suffered two right foot injuries. He is listed as questionable for tonight. Brunson has started each of the season’s 27 games.
The roughly 72-hour gap between games gave the Bulls time to process the chaotic final minutes of their loss to the Hawks. With 0.4 seconds left in the game, Derrick Jones Jr. was fouled on a layup with Chicago trailing 110-109. He made the first free throw but missed the second.
With 2.1 seconds left in overtime, Trae Young made a 3-pointer to give the Hawks the lead 121-119. On a last-ditch 3-point attempt, DeMar DeRozan was fouled by Bogdan Bogdanovic, but he made all three of his free throws. A.J. Griffin’s alley-oop turnaround jumper at the end of overtime on Sunday snapped the Bulls’ two-game winning streak, giving the visiting Atlanta Hawks a 123-122 victory.
Griffin then made the game-winning turnaround jumper with seconds remaining after Jalen Johnson lobbed him an alley-oop pass. The Bulls were attempting to win three straight games for the first time since a six-game winning streak from February 9–24 when their two-game winning streak was snapped.
The Knicks are 4-1 SU and ATS in their last five games. They are also 8-4 SU and ATS in their last 12 games against the Bulls. Chicago is 2-4 SU and ATS in its last six games. The total has gone Under in six of Chicago’s last seven games against New York. The Under is also 6-1 in the last seven games against the Knicks at home and the Under is 7-1 in the Bulls’ last eight home games.
Join Oskeim Sports today and save 20% on your first purchase at the online store!