Philadelphia 76ers at Chicago Bulls
Tuesday, 12/21/10, 8:00 PM EDT, TV
Opening Point Spread: Chicago -6
Current Betting Line: Chicago -6
Opening Total: 190.5
Current Total: 191
Philadelphia is set to play its second game of a eight-game road trip after posting a 97-89 win over the Orlando on Saturday night. The Sixers closed out a stretch of five games in seven nights by downing the shorthanded Magic despite being out-rebounded 53-39. “The key down the stretch was limiting their 3-point opportunities,” said forward Elton Brand. “We guarded that 3-point line as well as we have all season.” It’s still important to note that the team is 3-10 on the road and has lost three straight at the United Center by an average of 17.4 points. All of the club’s victories away from home have come against Eastern Conference opponents. Philadelphia is 18-8 ATS in all games this season and current a underdog on the NBA lines page.
The Sixers lost the 2009-10 season series 3-1, but the teams have split the past 12 meetings. Philadelphia is trying to avoid losing three straight to Chicago for first time since January 12, 2005-February 16, 2006. During last year’s meetings, The Bulls averaged 104.3 points on 45.1 percent shooting compared to 92.0 points and 43.3 percent shooting for the Sixers. Tuesday’s game serves as the first game of a back-to-back for Philadelphia, posting a 1-8 mark in the first game of this type of situation on the year. It’s also important to point out that the squad id 8-3 over the past 11 games after starting the season 3-13.
Chicago had its seven-game winning streak snapped in a 100-99 home loss to the Clippers and signs pointed to the club missing center Joakim Noah with a right thumb injury. The Bulls most valuable defensive player will miss eight to 10 weeks and have many concerned about the stop unit of the next couple months. “I don’t like any aspect of our defense because I thought we didn’t come out with the right intensity to start the game,” coach Tom Thibodeau stated. “In this league, you’ve got to come ready to play every night, and if you don’t, you’re asking for trouble.” Chicago is 10-3 at home this season, including a 3-2 mark against the Eastern Conference. The squad is 12-12 ATS as a home favorite of 3.5 to 6 points.
The Bulls will be leaning heavily on the frontcourt of Carlos Boozer and Taj Gibson in Noah’s absence. Boozer is averaging 27.0 points over the past three games, which is 9.7 more than his career average. He has also averaged 22.6 points and 10.7 rebounds in his last nine games against Philadelphia. Gibson was forced to leave in the third quarter last time out due to a concussion, but is likely to be available on Tuesday. Another player that shouldn’t be forgotten is star point guard Derrick Rose, who has averaged 20.3 points and 6.1 assists in eight career games versus the Sixers.
Bettors will be interested in knowing that the Sixers are 10-1 ATS versus the Eastern Conference, while the Bulls are 15-5-2 ATS following a straight up loss.
The NBA handicappers at Maddux Sports are on fire and can’t wait for you to join them on Tuesday night!