GAME NIGHT FROM THE UNITED CENTER: Brooklyn (44-24, 19-16 on the road) at Bulls: (29-39, 13-20 at home) 7PM
RADIO: WBBM 780. Chuck Swirsky and Bill Wennington. 6:45pre
TV: NBCSC: Adam Amin and Stacey King. 7PM
LEADING SCORERS: Bulls: LaVine: 27ppg. Nets: Durant: 28ppg.
LEADING REBOUNDERS: Vucevic: 11per. Nets: Jordan: 7.5
LEADING ASSISTS: LaVine 5per. Nets: Irving: 6per.
SEASON SERIES: Bulls 1-0.
A big time game tonight for the Bulls and Nets as the two teams are attempting to secure higher placement in the Eastern Conference standings. The Bulls trail 10th seed Washington by 2 1/2 games (2 in the loss column). The Wizards without Bradley Beal lost at Atlanta 125-124. Indiana moved ahead of Washington in to the ninth seed leading the Bulls by three full games. The Bulls own the tie breaker against the Wizards and Pacers. The Nets reside in second place a game ahead of third seed Milwaukee.
The Bulls have posted three straight wins holding their opponents to under 100 points in each outing. The offense is clicking with Zach LaVine, Nikola Vucevic and Coby White. The three combined for 80 points in the Bulls win over the Pistons. The key tonight could come down to the production of the Bulls bench triggered by Lauri Markkanen who will be counted on to score, defend and rebound. The two teams met in Chicago five weeks ago with the Bulls prevailing 115-107. Vucevic and Lavine combined for 27 points. "Vouch" is on a terrific run, compiling eight straight double-double games.
The Nets continue to play without James Harden but will benefit from a two day break and are expected to have Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant on the floor. Durant has played in only 31 games this year. Irving has missed 17 games. It will be interesting to see how the Nets brass handle minutes and rest in their last four games.
Troy Brown has been upgraded to questionable. He's missed the last ten games with an ankle injury. Daniel Theis is questionable as well. He sat out the Pistons game with a hip contusion. Harden will miss his 18th straight game due to a hamstring injury. Bruce Brown is questionable with a facial contusion.
CCI NBA NEWS AND NOTES
Atlanta 125, Washington 124. Russell Westbrook broke Oscar Robertson's all time triple-double mark, posting his 182nd of his brilliant career. However his three point attempt as time expired wouldn't fall as the Wizards dropped to 10th place in the Eastern Conference. The Wizards played without Bradley Beal who will also miss tomorrow's game in Atlanta with a hamstring injury.
Indiana 111, Cleveland 102. Domantas Sabonis had 21 points, 20 rebounds and nine assists. The Pacers lead the Wizards by one-half game for the ninth seed in the Eastern Conference. The Pacers win eliminated the Raptors from post season play for the first time in eight seasons.
San Antonio 146, Milwaukee 125. The Spurs scored 87 first half points. The Bucks are one game behind second place Brooklyn for second place in the Eastern Conference.
Golden State 119, Utah 116. Steph Curry tossed in 26 points, his seventh straight 30+ game as the Warriors are guaranteed of at least a play in game in the Western Conference.
Memphis 115, New Orleans 110. The Grizzilies secured a spot in the play in tournament as Jonas Valanciunas had 20 points, grabbed 11 rebounds and blocked five shots.
Portland 140, Houston 129. The Trail Blazers scored 50 first quarter points. I repeat. 50- first quarter points. Ballgame.
Boston's Jaylen Brown's season is over. The All Star guard will undergo season ending wrist surgery
All In. All Bulls. 365. 24-7. Always a pleasure. Go Bulls!