Chuck Checks In - 12.26.20

Chuck previews tonight's Bulls game against IND and shares news about yesterday's NBA Christmas Day games
Zach Lavine looking for a way in
by Chuck Swirsky
Remind Me Later

Body

Game night from The United Center: Indiana ( 1-0, 0-0 on the road) at Bulls: ( 0-1, 0-1 at home) 7:00PM

RADIO: 670 The Score: Chuck Swirsky and Bill Wennington 6:45 pre. TV: NBCSC: Adam Amin and Stacey King 7PM

LEADING SCORERS: Bulls: LaVine: 22pts Pacers: Sabonis: 32pts.
LEADING REBOUNDERS: Bulls: Markkanen: 7 per. Pacers: Sabonis: 13 per.
LEADING ASSISTS: Bulls: White: 7per. Pacers: Brogdon: 8 per.

CCI PREVIEW: The Bulls can't wait to get back in the " lab" after losing Wednesday to Atlanta 124-104. The Bulls simply didn't compete on the defensive side of the ball in the first half surrendering 83 points. The Hawks got it going early nailing three point shots along with getting to the rim. The Bulls allowed the Hawks to get too comfortable on offense and that's a point of emphasis tonight against Indiana.

The Pacers have a new coach in Nate Bjorkgren who assisted Nick Nurse on the Toronto staff winning the NBA title in 2019. The Pacers, like the Bulls, saw their core group decimated with injuries a year ago but still managed to make the playoffs, only to lose in the opening round to Miami.

Domantas Sabonis has arrived as a big time star coming off a career high 32 points and 13 rebounds in Indiana's 121-107 opening night win over the Knicks. Sabonis set a franchise record a year ago collecting 50 double-double games.

The Pacers have dominated play against the Bulls winning nine straight in the series and 11 of the last 12 overall.

CCI NBA NEWS AND NOTES:

Milwaukee 138, Golden State 99. Khris Middleton has scored 58 points in the Bucks first two games. Milwaukee went 20-37 from three point range. The Warriors have been outscored by 65 points in the first two games. It was the second most lopsided score of any Christmas Day game in NBA history. Syracuse beat the Knicks 162-100 on December 25, 1960. Draymond Green missed his second straight game. The Warriors are at the United Center tomorrow night.

Brooklyn 123, Boston 95. The Nets sent an early season message to the Eastern Conference with an impressive blow out road win. Kyrie Irving scored 37 points (seven three-pointers) and dished out eight assists.

Los Angeles Lakers 138, Dallas 115. LeBron James and Anthony Davis combined for 50 points, 15 rebounds and 15 assists. Last year's Sixth Man Award winner, Montrezl Harrell had a 22-7 game for the Lakers. The Mavs shot a solid 49% but the Lakers were better, at 56% and 49% from three point range.

Los Angeles Clippers 121, Denver 108. Kawhi Leonard was forced to leave the game after a collision with teammate Serge Ibaka. Leonard took eight stitches to the mouth. Nikola Jokic with another strong outing of 24-9-10 but the Nuggets fell to 0-2 on the young season.

Miami 111, New Orleans 98. Duncan Robinson drilled seven three-point field goals. Heat Coach Eric Spoelstra improved to 8-0 as coach of the Heat on Christmas Day.

The Rockets play the Blazers tonight but will have only nine available players. Six Houston players are missing because two players tested positive with the coronavirus, the others are sitting out due to health and safety protocols. James Harden will be in the lineup for the Rockets.

K.C. Jones, an outstanding player who later became an outstanding coach passed away at 88. Jones played nine seasons with the Celtics and won eight titles. As coach of the Celtics he won two more crowns in ‘84 and ‘86.

Thanks for reading CCI. Reach out: cswirsky@bulls.com or Twitter @ctsbulls

All In. All Bulls. 365. 24-7. Always a pleasure . Go Bulls !

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