Robin Lopez #42 and Otto Porter Jr. #22 of the Chicago Bulls are seen during the game against the Washington Wizards on February 9, 2019 at United Center in Chicago, Illinois.

Chuck's Daily Check In - 03.20.19

Chuck previews tonight's Bulls vs. Wizards game and shares updates from around the NBA

GAME NIGHT FROM THE UNITED CENTER: Washington (30-41, 8-27 on the road) at Bulls (20-52, 14-30 at home)
TV: NBC Sports Chicago: Neil Funk and Stacey King: 7PM tipoff.
RADIO: 670 THE SCORE: Chuck Swirsky, Bill Wennington and Steve Kashul. 6:45 pre.

LEADING SCORERS: Bulls: LaVine: 23ppg. Wizards: Beal: 26ppg.
LEADING REBOUNDERS : Bulls: Markkanen: 8 per. Wizards: Portis: 8 per。
LEADING ASSISTS: Bulls: Dunn: 5 per. Wizards: Beal: 5 per.

SEASON SERIES: 1-1. @ Washington: Bulls 101, Wizards 92. @ Chicago: Washington 134, Bulls 125.

CCI PREVIEW: The Bulls put together a solid game against the Suns as they remained consistent throughout, identifying Robin Lopez and Cristiano Felicio as low post threats against Phoenix. Lopez was a rock solid 11 of 14 from the field. Felicio was strong off the bench scoring 10 points and grabbing eight rebounds in 19 minutes. The Bulls attacked the glass recording 76 points in the paint. Look for a similar game plan tonight. I expect the Bulls to intensify their defense against Bradley Beal and make someone other than Beal become a difference maker. Utah made life uncomfortable for Beal as the Jazz held the All-Star to 15 points, well under his season average of 26 per game. Beal is a spectacular talent. He has relished being on the big stage with the absence of John Wall and he’s produced. He is an elite player. Period. He averages the most minutes in the NBA at 37.6. He also travels the most distance in the Association at 2.82 miles per game.

The Wizards are on life support for a playoff spot as they have felt the effects of Wall and Dwight Howard who played in only nine games. The Wizards also made two in-season major trades sending Otto Porter Jr. to the Bulls for Jabari Parker and Bobby Portis and dealing Kelly Oubre Jr. to the Suns for Trevor Ariza.

Parker in 17 games for the Wizards is averaging 14 points and 7 rebounds in 27 minutes per game. Portis as a Wizard is averaging 14 points and 8 rebounds in 26 minutes. He has nine consecutive games of 15+ off the bench.

It’s been a terrific trade for both teams as Porter is averaging 17 points and 5 rebounds in 15 games, shooting 48% from the field and 48% from three point range.

From the NBA injury report for the Bulls: Zach LaVine is questionable with a thigh contusion. Otto Porter Jr. is doubtful with a rotator cuff strain.

CCI 24 SECONDS NBA NEWS AND NOTES

Milwaukee 115, Los Angeles Lakers 101: No LeBron. No Giannis. Khris Middleton with a 30-10-5 game. Brook Lopez had a season-high 28 points. Against his former team. Kentavious Caldwell-Pope buried eight-three pointers and finished with 35. The Lakers have lost four straight and nine of ten.

Los Angeles Clippers 115, Indiana 109: The Clippers improved to 8-1 in March. Indiana’s Darren Collison missed his first game of the season after starting the previous 71.

Golden State 117, Minnesota 107: Steph Curry went off for 36 points, 22 coming in the third quarter. The Warriors went 3-1 on their four-game road trip.

Philadelphia 118, Charlotte 114: Four of the five 76ers starters each scored in double figures. JJ Redick with a 27-10 game. Philly has won five straight. The Hornets are a full three games behind Miami for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

Houston 121, Atlanta 105: James Harden scored 31 points, grabbed 8 rebounds and dished out 10 assists. Harden has scored 30 points on every team this season. After failing to get to the foul line in his previous game against Minnesota, Harden nailed 11 of 12 free throws. The Rockets have won 12 of their last 13 and 10 of 13 on the road.

Brooklyn 123, Sacramento 121: D’Angelo Russell had a career night of 44 points - 27 in the fourth quarter. The Nets rallied from 28 down in the second half. Want a great stat? Before Tuesday’s win, the Nets were 0-178 over the past 20 seasons when trailing by at least 25 points at any point in a game according to ESPN Stats and Information data. Wow.

Thanks for reading CCI. Reach out at cswirsky@bulls.com or Twitter: @ctsbulls. Always a pleasure!

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