Boston Celtics vs Chicago Bulls betting tips and predictions for Friday’s NBA Game on ESPN. The past 7 days have been rough for the Boston Celtics, but tonight they’ll try to turn things around as they host the Chicago Bulls. Read on for all our free predictions and betting tips.
The Celtics poor week actually started with a defeat at Chicago 120-102 in a game in which Boston was never really competitive. They’ve now lost 3 of their last 4 games, two of which were against the Cleveland Cavaliers in overtime. It’s pretty obvious that things aren’t clicking right now, but this isn’t unusual as their start of last season was pretty much identical. The absence of Robert Williams is hurting them on the inside, in the last meeting against Chicago Nikola Vucevic went for 23 rebounds, that wouldn’t happen if Al Horford had more help on the inside.
The play of Jayson Tatum has been encouraging as he leads the team with 30.1 points per game on almost 53% shooting. He’s also doing it on the defensive end, he blocked a three-point attempt from Donovan Mitchell as time expired to force OT the other night. But, Tatum can’t do it on his own, so it’s time for others to step up here. In the last 8 games against the Bulls at TD Garden the Celtics have won 6 of them, pressure is on them to deliver tonight.
Chicago has been able to win their last two games mostly because of their defensive effort. First they held the high scoring Nets to just 99 points and then they followed it up with a 88-point effort against the Charlotte Hornets. Zach LaVine has played really well, especially in the Nets game as he scored 20 points in the 4th quarter to turn things around for Chicago. He had just 19 points in the 1st meeting of the season on a poor shooting night, so the Bulls fans are expecting more from him tonight.
One guy that hasn’t disappointed this season is DeMar DeRozan as he leads the team with 23.3 points per game, shooting 48% from the field. With just 6 wins in the last 20 games against Boston, the Bulls will need both of those guys to step up here. The rebounding battle could decide tonight’s game, Andre Drummond has been ruled out for the Bulls, he had 12 boards in the game played a week ago vs Boston.
Boston hasn’t been convincing so far this season, they are just 10th in Net Rating with a +1.9 after 7 games played. I can see them beating the Bulls, but it’ll be a close game so let’s go with the road team and the extra points here.
Boston Celtics vs Chicago Bulls Predictions & Odds
The two teams combined for 222 points in the game played at United Center a little over a week ago, but I have to admit I’d be surprised if tonight’s game saw that many points scored. Primarily because of the Bulls stellar play on defense as of late. They are allowing just 100.3 points per game in their last 3 outings, so it will be hard for the Celtics to penetrate them on the inside. The total has gone under in 8 of the last 11 road games for Chicago, so it’s pretty clear that they like to slow things down in these type of games.
The Celtics have gone 4-3 on the O/U this season, but mostly because they lacked any defensive presence in the middle. I think their new head coach will emphasize this ahead of tonight’s game. Boston ranks only 18th in defensive rating after 7 games which is a significant drop-off compared to last season. The first meeting of the season went under the total, that was the 6th time in 8 games between these two teams, I think backing the under is the way for tonight’s match-up as well.