Chicago Bulls (14-18 12-17-3 ATS) vs. Charlotte Bobcats (14-18 21-11 ATS) Time Warner Cable Arena, Charlotte, NC 7 PM EST Tuesday January 5, 2010
by Jason Green at Predictem.com
Point Spread: Bulls +6 / Bobcats -6
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Tonight the Charlotte Hornets, who have won 2 in a row, host the Chicago Bulls. The Bobcats are 5-5 in their last 10 games and are in 4th place in the Southeast Division 9.5 games back of the Orlando Magic while the Bulls are 6-4 in their last 10 games and trail the Cleveland Cavaliers by 11 games in the Central Division. Both of these teams have the exact same record being 4 games under .500.
This season the Bobcats are solid at home being 11-4 and the Bulls are less than solid on the road going 3-11.
The Bobcats are coming home after winning 2 games in row on the road for the first time this season. The reason the Bobcats are in the playoff hunt is their defense, which ranks first in the league and at home they are holding opponents to an average of only 89.7 points per game. That is not good for a Chicago squad that is struggling to score this season. However, The Bobcats allowed the Bulls to shoot 50% from the field in a 93-90 loss in Chicago on November 7th.
The Bulls have lost their last game, but before that had won 4 in a row.
In their last game the Bulls lost to the Oklahoma City Thunder 98-85 last night. The high scorer for the Bulls in that game was Derrick Rose going for 19 points on 9/20 shooting. For the game the Bulls were ice cold shooting only going 35/99 for a paltry FG% of 35.4%. On defense the Bulls allowed the Thunder to shoot 40/82 for a FG% of 48.8%.
The Bobcats are coming off a solid 91-88 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Sunday. The high scorer for the Bobcats in that game was Stephen Jackson going for 22 points on 8/17 shooting. For the game the Bobcats shot well going 34/69 from the floor for a FG% of 49.3%. On D the Bobcats allowed the Cavs to shoot 35/73 for a FG% of 47.9%.
This season neither team is lighting up the scoreboard, to say the least, as the Bobcats rank 27th in scoring (92.2 ppg) and the Bulls rank 28th (91.8 ppg). The Bobcats rank 1st in the league in points allowed (92.5 ppg) while the Bulls rank a respectable 10th (97.2 ppg). Both teams are decent on the boards, as the Bulls have a rebounding differential of +2.3 rpg and the Bobcats are at +1.0 rpg.
According to the Sagarin NBA ratings the Bobcats rank 18th (89.09) and the Bulls rank 23rd (87.15).
Chicago is 5-1 ATS in their last 6 vs. Eastern Conference, 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games as an underdog, 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games overall, and 3-7-1 ATS in their last 11 games following a ATS loss.
Charlotte is 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games, 6-0 ATS in their last 6 vs. NBA Central, 4-1 ATS in their last 5 home games, and 7-2 ATS in their last 9 games as a home favorite.
In a couple of interesting Over/Under trends the Bulls have gone Over in their last 4 games against Southeast Division opponents and the Bobcats have gone Under in 5 of their last 6 games against teams from the Central Division.
With Tyson Chandler Out for the Bobcats, Joakim Noah (10.5 ppg 12.3 rpg), who is 2nd in the league in rebounds, will have a big game on the boards.
The Bulls are struggling to score and the Bobcats are playing stellar defense and that trend will continue tonight in a low scoring affair.
Look for Gerald Wallace (17.9 ppg) and Stephen Jackson (19 ppg) to have good scoring games tonight.
On the injury front C Tyson Chandler is Out for Charlotte while Chicago is not reporting any significant injuries.
Jason’s Pick: This will be a low scoring game and the Bobcats are playing with confidence while the Bulls have really struggled to win on the road this season. I think the Bobcats will win this game, but the Bulls will make it close and cover the 6-point spread. Take the Bulls and the points.