Cavs at Bulls Preview and Pick: The Chicago Bulls host the Cleveland Cavaliers on Saturday night at the United Center in what could prove to be an important game. Both teams are currently outside of the Eastern Conference playoff picture, but they are lurking and ready to sneak into the field.
Cleveland has gone 3-3 in their last six games, and they continue to hang around the playoff race, despite trading away some talent this season. The Cavaliers are still just 20-35 on the season, but there are pieces in place for the future.
Chicago has now lost five straight games, and playoff hopes are dwindling in a hurry for this team. The Bulls made a big splash at the trade deadline, but it has not led to the results that the new front office was looking for.
Chicago is a two-point home favorite over Cleveland, and the over/under is set at 212 total points.
Cavs at Bulls Preview and Pick: Cavs Competing on Defensive End
Most young teams in the NBA don’t focus enough on the defensive end of the floor, but that hasn’t been an issue with the Cavaliers. Cleveland is giving up just 111.5 points per game, which is right at the league average.
Kevin Love is back in the lineup for Cleveland, and his presence provides a huge lift for a team that struggles to score. The Cavaliers are scoring just 104 points per game, which is dead last in the league.
Guards Collin Sexton and Darius Garland are the future of this Cleveland franchise, and both players have been having a terrific year. Sexton leads the way for this team with 24.2 points per game, and Garland dishes out nearly six assists per night.
The Cavaliers do not have the depth or talent to keep up with the Bulls in a fast-paced game, and they must find a way to slow things down. If Cleveland can establish the tempo with its defense, then they could pick up a nice road win.
Cavs at Bulls Preview and Pick: No Lavine For Struggling Bulls
All-Star guard Zach LaVine is out of the lineup due to COVID-19 protocols, and this could not have come at a worse time for the Bulls. LaVine is leading the way for this team with 27.5 points per game, and he sets the tone for this offense.
Acquiring All-Star center Nikola Vucevic was supposed to make the Bulls an even better offensive team, but it just hasn’t worked out that way in the last few weeks. Vucevic has done his part for the team, but Chicago just hasn’t been getting enough contributions from role players.
Chicago continues to struggle on the defensive end of the floor as well, allowing close to 114 points per game. The Bulls have shown some flashes of playing great basketball, but there just hasn’t been enough consistency.
Cavs at Bulls Preview and Pick: Bulls Run over Rival
Cleveland is catching a huge break in facing the Bulls without LaVine, but the Cavaliers still have some issues of their own. This team has been a solid defensive team this season, but they don’t always find enough ways to put points on the board.
The Bulls played well on Friday night without LaVine against the Memphis Grizzlies, and there is still enough talent on this team to win. Look for Chicago to be motivated to take advantage of a great opportunity on Saturday, and the offense will lead the way.
Things have not come easy for the Bulls lately, but this is a great opportunity to turn things around. Look for the Bulls to play one of their best games in weeks as they get past their division rivals to end the losing streak.
Bet the Chicago Bulls -2.0 over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Saturday night.
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