Both the Chicago Bulls and Dallas Mavericks are coming off Saturday night wins. Dallas knocked off a red-hot Oklahoma City Thunder squad and the Bulls squeeze past Cleveland in the final seconds.
The Bulls opened at a 1-point favorite but now come into tonight’s game against Dallas as a 1.5-point (-110) underdog, laying $110 dollars would net you $100. Chicago and Dallas have already faced off this season, Mavericks winning 115-109 but it was competitive throughout. Since then, the Bulls have lost Kris Dunn and Bobby Portis to their rotation but still managing a 4-6 record. The Mavericks have been quite the opposite, 2-7 since their win against the Bulls but have won two of their last three games.
As the injuries have piled up for the Bulls, Fred Hoiberg has been able to make a noticeable change in the way the Bulls are playing defense. Since their blow out loss to Golden State Warriors at home, the Bulls are fifth-best in the league in defensive rating at 103.6 in six games.
Bulls team defense has made strides but the offense has fallen off a cliff recently. Zach LaVine has been about the only reliable scorer for the Bulls, averaging 27.2 points per game and 20-points or more in the first 13 games this season. While Dallas may not be an offensive powerhouse, the Bulls are going to need secondary scoring to hang with the Mavericks Luka Doncic and Dennis Smith Jr.
An advantage for the Bulls tonight, over the past six games the Mavericks have allowed opponents to shoot 40.8% (dead last) from three on 28.8 attempts. Justin Holiday (38.3%) and Zach LaVine (34.9%) are the Bulls main three-point threats (13.6 attempts) but look for Ryan Arcidiacono (52.8% on 3.0 attempts) and Antonio Blakeney (47.4% on 2.9 attempts) to potentially have big nights behind the line.
Whether you’re looking at trends, analytics, or even just the eye test when it comes to putting money down tonight, you may want to avoid the spread completely. Chicago is 8-5 this season against the spread and Dallas is 7-5. Both the Bulls and Mavericks are 1-2 against the spread coming off of wins this season.
Smart play for tonight tends to tell me to stay away from this one. If you have to make a play, the Bulls are 5-1 against the spread this season when they are a home underdog but an overall -6.0 margin of victory. Dallas has been worse, 0-2 as an away favorite with a margin of victory of -14.
Bulls-Mavericks Player Props
Zach LaVine – Points (25.5): LaVine has been an absolute stud of the Bulls this season. He has scored 20+ points in each of their first 13 games. The last time the Bulls played Dallas, LaVine had 34-points on 11/15 shooting. I like LaVine tonight at home, Dallas’ perimeter defense has been bad of recently. Look for LaVine to try and duplicate his five three-pointers against the Mavericks tonight.
Bet: Zach LaVine over 25.5 points (-115)
DeAndre Jordan – Points and Rebounds (23.5): Let’s get straight to it, DeAndre Jordan absolutely dominated against the Bulls earlier this season. He posted 18-points, 16-rebounds in a win. Jordan’s first six games he scored double-digit points and rebounds but in their last six games has one done it twice. Wesley Matthews is out tonight so Dallas will need another scoring option. The Bulls frontcourt has been dominated on the boards this year, look to Jordan for a big night again tonight.
Bet: DeAndre Jordan points and rebounds over 23.5 (-115)
Luka Doncic – Points (19.5): Over the past six games, Doncic is averaging 22-points per game. The Mavericks will be without their second leading scorer in Wesley Matthews. While the Bulls defense has taken strides to be better this season, Doncic could quite easily put up 20+ points tonight. While I don’t love it at -125, it might be the safest prop bet tonight.
Bet: Luka Doncic over 19.5 points (-125)
Justin Holiday – Points (11.5): Crazy I know, but Justin Holiday has been actually quite good behind the arc this season. I mentioned early how the Mavericks have been the worst team at defending the three over the past few weeks (40.8% on 28.8 attempts), this might not be a bad play. Holiday is shooting 43.5% from three at home this season as opposed to 33.3% on the road. LaVine will clearly be the first option on offense but after that becomes a question. Holiday is good for a heater once every 10 days or so, look for that tonight.
Bet: Justin Holiday over 11.5 points (-115)
All betting odds and lines were taken from Bovada.lv
Bulls brutal November schedule continues in Boston
Locked On Bulls is back with a fresh episode, the guys kick off the show reflecting on being with Locked On Podcast Network for a year hosting Locked On Bulls. The guys highlight some of the best moments since their start and what they were thinking about this rebuild in year one. Note: an additional episode of the best of Locked On Bulls will be available in a separate episode. The guys also announce giveaway details on Twitter to win a Wendell Carter Jr. jersey!
The second segment of the show the guys give you a full preview of the Boston Celtics including thoughts from Locked On Celtics. Celtics are coming off 1-4 road trip and the offense has been bad, how can the Bulls capitalize on a cold start? What’s up with Gordon Hayward? The guys get Locked On Celtics take on what’s going on, potentially coming off the bench and Jaylen Brown’s slow start. The guys also get into some on-off court numbers for the Bulls as a team at two different positions. Since Ryan Arcidiacono has replaced Cameron Payne, how have the Bulls played? The guys also take a look at Jabari Parker and Chandler Hutchison.
The final segment of the show, the guys take mailbag questions from their text/voicemail line. Some of the topics include if the Bulls end up in the lottery this year, where are we look at being positioned? How many teams will be worse than the Bulls? Jordan isn’t convinced the Bulls will be bad enough to be a Top-5 lottery team. Other topics include trading would you trade Lonzo Ball for Kris Dunn straight up and which of the Reinsdorf’s franchises will win a championship first, the White Sox or Bulls? All of this and so much more on Locked On Bulls.
- Bulls Otto Porter Jr.’s career night and how he is building chemistry February 15, 2019
- Bulls Mailbag: LaVine PG experiment, Noah, if no Zion… (Plan B), Porter February 14, 2019
- Will too much grit and toughness bring Bulls long-term side effects? February 13, 2019
- Bulls offense getting a boost from Lauri Markkanen and Zach LaVine February 12, 2019
- Bulls John Paxson does not believe perception is reality February 11, 2019
Bulls Otto Porter Jr.’s career night and how he is building chemistry
Otto Porter Jr. might be the most expensive player on the Bulls roster right now but it's hard to deny...
Bulls Mailbag: LaVine PG experiment, Noah, if no Zion… (Plan B), Porter
Bulls fans text and call in asking, Locked On Bulls is here to answer - Should the Bulls experiment with...
Will too much grit and toughness bring Bulls long-term side effects?
Kris Dunn is just the latest example of the Bulls being plagued by injury this season but the bigger question...
Bulls offense getting a boost from Lauri Markkanen and Zach LaVine
Coming into last night's game, head coach Jim Boylen let the media know that the Bulls were had the best...
Bulls John Paxson does not believe perception is reality
John Paxson seems to believe that the perception of the Bulls front office and organization is not what the reality...