Chicago Bulls vs Los Angeles Clippers: Predictions, Odds and Roster Notes

How to Watch

What: Chicago Bulls at Los Angeles Clippers

Where: Staples Center in Los Angeles, CA

When: Friday, March 15th at 10:30 PM EST

How (TV/Radio): NBATV, WGN, Fox Sports Prime Ticket | 670 The Score, AM 570 LA Sports

Chicago Bulls (Away)

Head Coach: Jim Boylen {All-Time 14-31 | CHI}

The Chicago Bulls have been eliminated from playoff contention. With a record of 19-50, the Bulls are not only in the basement of the Eastern Conference but are in the top four in odds for the top overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft. It’s not the season that Bulls fans wanted, but it is what rebuilding looks like.

The Bulls are currently on a three-game losing streak and sport a 4-6 record in their last ten matches. They were able to take home a gutsy one-point victory over the Philadelphia 76ers and an exhausting 168-161 victory over the Atlanta Hawks in a quadruple overtime affair, so it is not as if the Bulls fail to compete. It is more that immediate talent doesn’t pack their roster.

When the Chicago Bulls take on the Los Angeles Clippers their defense will be tested. They maintain impressive weapons in the form of Lou Williams and Danilo Gallinari, while the energy and effort of Montrezl Harrell and Ivica Zubac on the defensive end are something to consider. The Bulls will have their hands full.

Los Angeles Clippers (Home)

Head Coach: Doc Rivers {All-Time 885-654 | ORL, BOS, LAC}

The Los Angeles Clippers remain one of the top teams in the Western Conference. With a record of 39-30, they maintain a 4.5 game lead over the Sacramento Kings who are their closest competitors at ninth in the Western Conference.

The Clippers are doing their best to ward off the teams gunning for their spot as well. They are 7-3 in their last ten games and seem a lock for the Western Conference playoffs. Their recent losses are only to the Blazers, Jazz, and Nuggets, who are some of the best teams in the West.

The Clippers face off against a competitive if not talented Chicago Bulls team. Their defense will have to keep up with the Bulls’ perimeter threat, as Zach Lavine and Otto Porter have been filling it up for the Bulls all season. The Clippers should have the advantage on the inside, but that’s only if their bigs can keep the pace.

What’s At Stake?

In the all-time series, the Chicago Bulls have been the leaders against the Los Angeles Clippers. Through 117 regular season games, the Bulls lead the Clippers 65-52.

A win for the Clippers would give them a five-game lead over the Sacramento Kings who chase them in eighth place.

A win for the Chicago Bulls would do little for their standing, keeping them thirteenth in the Eastern Conference.

Questions to answer

What was behind the Bulls’ collapse?

We are going to compare the Chicago Bulls and the Los Angeles Clippers in an attempt to see who has the advantage in this matchup.

The Bulls Lost Their Last Match To The Lakers

For another straight season, the Chicago Bulls were eliminated from playoff contention by LeBron James’ team. There wasn’t too much pressure, considering the Bulls weren’t likely to make a serious run anyway. But was is more concerning was the Bulls’ forfeiture of a 20-point lead.

The Bulls, like any team, were just unable to contain LeBron James. He was unstoppable on offense, shooting 15-23 from the field to the tune of 36 points on the evening. The Lakers cut out the Bulls’ 20-point lead and won the game 123-107.

It was the third quarter that doomed the Chicago Bulls, as they were outscored 43-24. They showed that, despite their enthusiasm, they are not yet a team with the maturity to maintain their advantage. The Lakers were going to come out shooting and the Bulls folded with the additional pressure. The Clippers are a team of bulldogs themselves, Chicago can’t afford another lapse in focus.

LA Belongs to the Clippers

That is the headline that the Clippers have been dreaming of seeing since their inception. Gone are the days of Elton Brand, Sam Cassell is now a coach, and Quentin Richardson and Darius Miles have a podcast. This Clippers team is built on grit and intensity, the type that outlasted their rival Lakers.

At the beginning of the season, the Los Angeles Clippers and Lakers held their respective media days. The difference in interest was stark:

 

 

Now the Los Angeles Clippers are the kings of LA with a team that has the chance to make some serious noise in the Western Conference playoffs. They maintain their offensive sharpness and have hustle and mentality that can take them far against even the toughest competition. At the moment they are matched up with the Warriors in the first round. While they’re certainly not afraid, they’d do well to try and climb to the second spot for a better chance at the second round.

Chicago Bulls Roster Notes

C Wendell Carter – 24 Feb 2019 – Out (Left Thumb) – Carter Jr. had a pin removed from his surgically repaired thumb, according to K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune. He’s expected to be out until at least late March. There’s a chance he doesn’t play again this season.

F Chandler Hutchinson – 8 Mar 2019 – Out (Right Toe Fracture) – Hutchison will be re-evaluated in two weeks, according to Mark Strotman of NBC Sports Chicago.

G Zach Lavine – 12 Mar 2019 – Day To Day (Knee) – LaVine did not play in Tuesday’s game (Mar. 12).

G-F Denzel Valentine – 13 Feb 2019 – Out For Season (Ankle) – Valentine is out of his walking boot, but is still a couple of months from resuming basketball activities.

Los Angeles Clippers Roster Notes

F Luc Mbah a Moute – 8 Mar 2019 – Out (Knee) – Mbah a Moute is starting to practice with the team, but there is no timetable for his return, according to Tomer Azarly of clutchpoints.com.

Head-to-Head: Otto Porter (LAC) vs Danilo Gallinari (LAC)

The forwards are the point of focus for this match between the Chicago Bulls and the Los Angeles Clippers. Otto Porter has really found his offensive game in a Bulls uniform while Danilo Gallinari continues to be a steady contributor for the Clippers.

Otto Porter

Small Forward | 6-8, 198lb (203cm, 89kg) | Georgetown | Exp. 5 Years

18.4 PPG | 3.0 APG | 6.1 RPG | 1.3 SPG | 0.7 BPG | 1.8 TOV | .486 FG% | .493 3P%

Otto Porter seems to be a completely different player for the Chicago Bulls versus when he was with the Washington Wizards earlier this season. He now plays the role of second scorer and court veteran, able to lead his young Bulls squad through their mistakes. He is also stout on the defensive end, showing an ability to guard players one through four with little drop-off.

Danilo Gallinari

Small Forward | 6-10, 225lb (208cm, 102kg) | Italy | Exp. 9 Years

19.3 PPG | 2.4 APG | 5.9 RPG | 0.7 SPG | 0.4 BPG | 1.4 TOV | .457 FG% | .435 3P%

Danilo Gallinari is the definition of consistency for the Los Angeles Clippers. Once a streaky outside threat, Gallinari has become a scorer and playmaker from everywhere on the court for the Los Angeles Clippers. Gallinari took a rest day in his last match but he is expected to face off against the Bulls. He will be essential on both ends for the Clippers.

Chicago Bulls at Los Angeles Clippers Predictions and Odds

The oddsmakers have the Los Angeles Clippers favored over the Chicago Bulls by 8.5, with an over/under of 110.