DeMar DeRozan and the Chicago Bulls get their last chance to beat the Miami Heat in the regular season this Sunday morning. Will the Bulls finally take down Miami? Or, will the Heat roast Chicago again?
Catch this game live on Sunday, April 3, at 8 AM, Manila time
Away: Miami Heat (49-28/22-16 on the road)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Kyle Lowry
- SG: Duncan Robinson
- SF: Jimmy Butler
- PF: PJ Tucker
- C: Bam Adebayo
There is some rhythm now for the Heat, who have won back to back following a four-game winless streak – during which their chemistry looked like on the verge of imploding. The Heat followed up their 123-100 demolition of the Sacramento Kings at home last Tuesday with a massive 106-98 victory over the Boston Celtics on the road. Beating the Celtics was a major accomplishment at this point of the regular season for Miami, considering how great Boston has been since after the All-Star break.
Miami’s defense is shining again, and holding the Celtics to just 98 points on 41.2 FG% was a strong message Miami had sent to the Bulls. The Heat are 3-0 this season versus Chicago, thanks in large part to their defense. In those games, the Bulls averaged just 98.3 points on 44.4 FG%. Nikola Vucevic seems lost whenever he deals with Miami, as he is only putting up 10.3 points on an atrocious 34.2 FG% against the Heat this season. Miami enters this game with an 8-1-1 ATS in their last 10 away games.
Home: Chicago Bulls (45-32/27-10 at home)
Projected Starting Five:
- PG: Zach LaVine
- SG: Javonte Green
- SF: Ayo Dosunmo
- PF: DeMar DeRozan
- C: Nikola Vucevic
DeMar DeRozan is on another Kobe-esque streak. The Bulls’ scoring machine has scored at least 32 points in each of his last three games, and that includes his 50-point performance in a 135-130 overtime home win over the Los Angeles Clippers last Friday – Chicago’s third win in four games. Even though Miami’s defense has been a problem this season for the Bulls, DeRozan has still put up 23.0 points on 51.4 FG% against the Heat. And with his hands still warm from his monster showing against the Clippers, he could be a handful anew for Miami.
Zach LaVine is also doing just fine this season when playing opposite the Heat, as he is making 23.7 points on 48.1 FG% and 44.8 3FG% in the matchup. Chicago, which is 12-4 ATS in its last 16 home games, should also capitalize on the Heat’s turnovers, as Miami is 27th in the league with 14.6 TOs per game and 27th as well in terms of turnover rate (13.3%). The Bulls, on the other hand, are 10th in the league with 16.5 points off turnovers per contest.
Spread: Miami lets DeRozan cook but shuts down the rest of the Bulls for a win and cover (-2.5).
Over/Under: 219.5 seems pretty high of a line for a game featuring two teams in the bottom 10 in field-goal attempts per game. Taking the Under here.