GAME DAY FROM TORONTO
Bulls: (19-32, 8-17 on the road) at Toronto: (35-14, 17-7 at home)
TV: NBCSC: Jason Benetti and Stacey King: 2PM CT.
RADIO: 670 The Score: Chuck Swirsky, Bill Wennington, and David Schuster: 1:45 CT pre.
LEADING SCORERS: Bulls: LaVine: 25ppg. Raptors: Siakam: 23 ppg.
LEADING REBOUNDERS: Bulls: LaVine and Young each with 4. Raptors: Ibaka: 8 per.
LEADING ASSISTS: Bulls: Satoransky: 5 per. Raptors: Lowry: 7 per.
SEASON SERIES: Raptors: 2-0.
PREVIEW: The injury-depleted Bulls take on the NBA's hottest team in the Raptors this afternoon to finish off a three-game road trip. The loss of Kris Dunn eliminates one the best defensive players on the squad and there's no question it will be felt on many levels. Dunn's ball-hawking ability and his ever-present tenacity that he brings nightly will be sorely missed.
Opposing teams are focusing most of their attention on stopping Zach LaVine so it's important a host of players step up. The Bulls did score 118 points against the Nets and that's an impressive figure but allowing 133 points (54 by Kyrie Irving) was an issue as the Nets scored 30 or more points in each of the four quarters.
Toronto is having a sensational year. They won the title a year ago, lost their best player to free agency in Kawhi Leonard, tweaked the roster and the Raps are 35-14. Their coach, the very underrated Nick Nurse, will be on the bench for the All-Star Game in Chicago in two weeks. If the Raptors stay healthy come mid-April don't be surprised if they come out of the Eastern Conference despite Milwaukee's gaudy regular-season success. Norman Powell is the latest member of the Raps sidelined as he sustained a broken finger on his left hand. Marc Gasol and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson will also sit out today's contest.
24 SECONDS NBA NEWS AND NOTES:
"Game of the Night" Boston 116, Philadelphia 95: Jaylen Brown with a 32-9 game. The 76ers shot just 37%. Celtics announcer Sean Grande dropping knowledge: Boston has beaten four playoff teams in the last 12 days (Lakers, Grizzlies, Heat, and Sixers) by a combined 85 points.
Portland 124, Utah 107: Damian Lillard. Damian Lillard. Damian Lillard. 51 points against the Jazz becoming the first player in NBA history to average 45 points and 10 assists per game in a six-game span.
Los Angeles Lakers 129, Sacramento 113: LeBron James with 15-10-11.
Washington 113, Brooklyn 107: Bradley Beal, NOT an All-Star scored 34 points to lead the Wizards. Spencer Dinwiddie, NOT an All-Star led the Nets with 26. Kyrie Irving sustained a right knee sprain late in the fourth quarter. He will undergo an MRI today.
New York 92, Indiana 85: Julius Randle had 16 points and grabbed 18 rebounds.The Knicks came through with a rare road win as they held Victor Oladipo to seven points on 2-14 from the field.
Miami 102, Orlando 89: Miami's two All-Stars delivered. Jimmy Butler with 24 points. Bam Adebayo pulled down 14 rebounds.
Dallas 123, Atlanta 100: Jalen Brunson with a terrific game of 27-4-8. Trae Young suffered a sprained right ankle in the third quarter.
Golden State 131, Cleveland 112: Draymond Green tied his career-high with 16 rebounds. The Warriors at 11-39 own the NBA's worst record. Cleveland at 13-37 has the second-worst mark in the NBA.
San Antonio 114, Charlotte 90: It was the final home game for the Spurs for the next 3/12 weeks. The building hosts the annual rodeo show so the Spurs play eight straight on the road eight he All-Star break in the middle of it.
Los Angeles Clippers 118, Minnesota 106: Kawhi Leonard scored 31 points. It was his ninth straight game of 30+ points, longest streak in the NBA this season. Paul George added 21. The T-Wolves are 18 games under .500. Minnesota has lost 11 straight.
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