The Knicks (9-13) traveled to Chicago (8-11) on Monday night and were defeated 102-110. Let’s take a look at my Knicks at Bulls betting preview for Game 2. A major reason for the Bull’s win was forward Lauri Markkanen who led all scorers with 30 points. Unfortunately for the Bulls, Markkanen is not Anthony Davis and although he has improved a ton you cannot depend on him for 30 every game.
Bulls Shine in the Clutch
Markkanen and Knicks forward Julius Randle (23 points) was a matchup to watch all game, but in the end, Markkanen got the best of Randle. Late in the fourth quarter with under a minute remaining the Knicks went to Randle who was met down low in the paint by Markkanen who stripped Randle to regain possession for the Bulls.
Knicks players appeared outraged that the referees did not call any sort of foul as there was contact, but this last matchup was a very even battle. I expect Randle to win the matchup against Markkanen the next time out.
White and Lavine Call Game
The final score doesn’t do justice to the closeness of the Bulls win from two nights ago. With under one-minute remaining the game was tied at 100 until Coby White was left with room in the corner splashing home the tie-breaking three-pointer.
The Bulls played some good defense and guard Zach LaVine stepped into a three ending all hope the Knicks had in winning the game. We all know that Zach LaVine is an electrifying basketball player who when he takes flight grabs the attention of the entire NBA.
As LaVine has developed as a basketball player he has started to become a complete basketball player. LaVine’s ability to score or bunches is a reason Knicks betters should be wary.
Why are the Knicks in Chicago for 2 Consecutive Games?
When looking at the NBA schedule you might be wondering why it seems that the same teams play multiple times in a row. No, the NBA has not officially adopted a multiple game series format like you would see in the MLB.
The NBA adjusted the schedule format to limit travel as much as possible from city to city while Covid-19 remains a threat. This format appears to be working as a great alternative to the NBA bubble that was in Orlando.
Record the Last 5 Games
Bulls 2-3 (defeated the Knicks on Monday)
Throughout the 2021 NBA season, neither of these teams has shown the ability to be consistent. With that being said I am not sure that I can trust either of these teams, but I expect the Knicks to end their skid.
Early Odds via William Hill NJ
Knicks + 2.5 (-110) Moneyline (+120) O/U 216 (-110)
Bulls – 2.5 (-110) Moneyline -140 O/U 216 (-110)
Prediction: Knicks +2.5
Knicks at Bulls Betting Prediction
Just a few nights ago these two teams squared off for four quarters. A major difference between this matchup and one during a normal season, both teams had a night off and did not travel, meaning they are fresh. Both the Knicks and Bulls have a lot of young players that have yet to take the next big step.
Knicks guard R.J. Barrett is the player-coach Thibodeau hopes takes the next step and becomes an All-Star. Barrett had opportunities late in Monday’s game to hit clutch shots and did not come through. I expect Barrett to play a lot better and help the Knicks defeat the Bulls.
Don’t forget Thibodeau is a former coach of the Chicago Bulls and he knows how to win in the United Center.
Take the points and take Knicks +2.5.