GAME NIGHT FROM WASHINGTON DC: Bulls (10-19, 4-9 on the road) at Wizards (8-17, 4-6 at home)
TV: NBCSC - Jason Benetti and Stacey King at 6PM CT.
RADIO: 670 The Score - Chuck Swirsky, Bill Wennington, David Schuster at 5:45 CT.
LEADING SCORERS: Bulls: LaVine - 23ppg. Wizards: Beal - 27 ppg.
LEADING REBOUNDERS: Bulls: Carter - 9 per game. Wizards: Brown - 5 per game
LEADING ASSISTS: Bulls: Satoransky - 5 per game. Wizards: Beal - 7 per game.
CCI PREVIEW: After a heart breaking loss at Oklahoma City, the Bulls refocus meeting an injury-riddled Wizards team that snapped a four-game losing streak beating Detroit Monday.
Tomas Satoransky has been solid all season long for the Bulls. He returns to DC for the first time in an opposing uniform after spending three seasons with the Wizards. In 210 games, "Sato" averaged six points and three assists for Washington. Satoransky is averaging nine points and five assists for the Bulls.
The Bulls have a deep bench. Denzel Valentine has excelled, recording double figure scoring games in six of his last seven contests. Ryan Arcidiacono came off the bench against OKC and poured in 12 points.
The good news/bad news for the Wizards: They average 118 points per game, fourth in the NBA. However, Washington allows a league-high 122 points per contest. This is NOT a typo. 122 points. Opponents are shooting nearly 50% against the Wizards this season and the Wizards average only 41 rebounds per game, last in the NBA rankings.
Bradley Beal is THE face of the Wizards. With John Wall still rehabbing from a serious Achilles injury, Beal has established himself as an elite, franchise type player. He can score, get to the line, defend and pass. He is the fifth leading scorer in the Association averaging just under 28 points per game.
Expect Beal to appear in his third All-Star game in February at the United Center. In my opinion, Zach LaVine will be there as well.
Davis Bertans has been a great pick up for the Wizards, as the former Spur has the ability to spread the floor shooting 45% from three point land, eighth in the NBA. In eight December games, Bertans is averaging 21 points, shooting nearly 50% from the field and 48% from three point range.
The Wizards suffered yet another setback, losing first round pick Rui Hachimura for at least five games with a groin injury. The Wizards are simply running out of players. The Wizards have listed seven players out for tonight's game.
CCI 24 SECONDS NBA NEWS AND NOTES:
Indiana 105, Los Angeles Lakers 102: Malcolm Brogdon's driving layup lifted the Pacers to victory. Domantas Sabonis keeps ballin'. Make it 13 straight double-double games. Indiana improved to 19-9. The Lakers dropped to 24-4 and saw their 14-game road win streak come to an end. Anthony Davis missed the game with an ankle issue.
New York 143, Atlanta 120: The Hawks lost for the 22nd time. The Knicks won their seventh game of the season. R.J. Barrett scored a career-high 27 points for the Knicks who have won three of their last four games. Trae Young scored 42 points, but the Hawks have lost five straight and are giving up a ton of points in the process.
Brooklyn 108, New Orleans 101 (OT): Spencer Dinwiddie scored 31 points. Is it possible to think of him as an All-Star? I think so. The Pelicans have lost 13 straight.
Los Angeles Clippers 120, Phoenix 99: After sitting out the Bulls game Saturday, Kawhi Leonard returned to the LAC lineup and scored 20 points. Deandre Ayton returned to the Suns lineup after serving a 25 game suspension for violating the terms of the NBA/NBAPA Anti-Drug program. He played 24 minutes, scoring 18 points, 12 rebounds, three assists and a block.
Charlotte 110, Sacramento 102: Malik Monk with an impressive 23-10 game, his first career double-double game. Don't look now but the Hornets have won four of their last five games.
Utah 109, Orlando 102: Donovan Mitchell and Bojan Bogdanovic each scored 30 points - the first Jazz duo to do so since Carlos Boozer and Deron Williams in 2008. Rudy Gobert posted his 10th straight double-double.
Always a pleasure.