GAME NIGHT FROM MILWAUKEE: Bulls (4-11, 2-5 on the road) at Milwaukee (10-4, 6-1 at home)
TV: WGN TV - Neil Funk and Stacey King 8:30PM CT. ESPN.
Radio: 670The Score - Chuck Swirsky, Bill Wennington, Steve Kashul 8:15 pre.
LEADING SCORERS: Bulls: LaVine: 25 ppg. Milwaukee: Antetokounmpo: 25 ppg.
LEADING REBOUNDERS: Bulls: Carter Jr.: 7. Milwaukee: Antetokounmpo: 12.
LEADING ASSISTS: Bulls: Arcidiacono: 4 per. Milwaukee: Bledsoe: 6 per.
CCI PREVIEW: The Bulls will need to play a full 48-minute game tonight as they take on a Bucks club coming off their first home loss of the season Wednesday dropping a game to Memphis. Head Coach Mike Budenholzer has brought in his system from Atlanta and the Bucks have become a three-point shooting ball club and the players have totally bought in. The Bucks crank it up on an average of 40 times a game - second in the NBA. They’re shooting 35% from that area - 5th in the NBA. It helps having the personnel to launch threes although Giannis Antetokounmpo is 2-28 this season. In transition, Antetokounmpo is nearly unstoppable... check that... he IS unstoppable! Those long strides to the rim and his ability to finish ABOVE the rim make him one of the more electrifying players in the NBA. He is a legit MVP candidate. The Bulls perimeter defense will be tested and they have to seal off the wings, especially with Khris Middleton who can flat out drill it. He is on my CCI underrated team.
Milwaukee leads the NBA in scoring averaging 121 points per game. They allow 110. You do the math. A differential of nearly 11 points.
The Bulls are totally feeling the effect of entering the teeth of the schedule with an undermanned roster. No excuses. Just facts. Fred Hoiberg is doing his best to bring consistency to his young roster. The Bulls need to be in attack mode and get to the line. Easier said than done. Zach LaVine - 8th in scoring at 25 per game - will need plenty of help tonight too as the Bulls will attempt to out score the Bucks. Jabari Parker returns to Milwaukee where he played four seasons and 183 games, averaging 15 points and 5 rebounds. The important element and focus for the Bulls remains the development and progress of young players such as Wendell Carter Jr., Chandler Hutchison, Kris Dunn, Antonio Blakeney and you can add Ryan Arcidiacono to that group as well. Shaq Harrison was terrific the other night. Loved his aggressiveness on the defensive side of the ball. There is no such thing as "garbage time" in the NBA. I don’t like that phrase. Every moment counts and for players on the floor, it’s an opportunity to improve and get better in the framework of team basketball.
CCI 24 SECONDS NBA NEWS AND NOTES
Houston 107, Golden State 86: The Rockets now 7-7 as James Harden scored 27 points. The Rockets announced they were "parting ways" with Carmelo Anthony. Golden State went 4-18 from 3 point range. Draymond Green 0 points 5 turnovers in 23 minutes.
Denver 138, Atlanta 93: It was the fourth-largest victory in Nuggets history.
Los Angeles Clippers 116, San Antonio 111: The Clippers improved to 7-1 at home. The Spurs dropped to 7-7.
Rajon Rondo suffered a broken hand in the Lakers win over Portland Wednesday. He will be sidelined four weeks.