NBA Picks: Lakers at Bulls Predictions and Betting Odds
by Aaron Smith - 12/10/2010
The ESPN NBA lineup on Friday starts off with a terrific battle between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Chicago Bulls. Anytime the Lakers and the Bulls get together it’s a must-watch, and both of these teams are having a solid start to the season. Carlos Boozer is back in the lineup for the Bulls and Chicago has won three straight. The Lakers lost four in a row, but they have since rebounded to win their last three as well. I fully expect both teams to be extra pumped up about this matchup.
Most of the NBA talk so far this season has been about the Miami Heat, but the Lakers are still the defending champions. Until proven otherwise, it’s the Lakers that should be considered the favorite to win it all again this year. Los Angeles is starting to get healthier as the season moves along.
Andrew Bynum isn’t playing yet, but the team expects him to be back next week. Lamar Odom and Pau Gasol are both putting up big numbers so far this season. Both Odom and Gasol are averaging a double-double. It is extremely rare to see two players on the same team averaging a double-double. Odom is having his best year yet as a Laker, and that has taken some pressure off of Kobe Bryant. Bryant is rounding into form, but he still isn’t quite back to normal health after his postseason surgery. Bryant has scored at least 20 points in the Lakers last 10 games, so he is consistently producing at a high rate.
The Chicago Bulls are 12-8 so far this year, but they are 7-2 inside the United Center. Boozer’s return should definitely help the team establish a presence in the post, which is crucial to their long-term success. Derrick Rose has absolutely stepped up in a big way so far this season. He averaged 20.8 points per game last year, but he is averaging 25.1 points per game so far this season. Rose is averaging 8.2 assists per game, and he has now become a decent shooter from beyond the arc. There is no doubt that Rose is proving very capable of being the leader for this team.
Joakim Noah is a stat sheet stuffer, and he gives his best effort every single night. If the Bulls are going to take the next step up, they need to become a little more efficient on the offensive end. The Bulls have also let a few close games slip away because of their poor free throw shooting. This is a team that is very dangerous, but they are still a work in progress.
Lakers at Bulls Betting Odds and Line Movement
The Lakers are now 1.5-point favorites at most books, according to NBA odds, after the public has started pouring money on their side. The pointspread opened at even. The posted total opened at 200 points, but it has since dropped to 198 at most books.
Los Angeles Lakers at Chicago Bulls Betting Trends
The Lakers are 0-4 ATS in their last 4 road games
The Lakers are 1-7 ATS in their last 8 games overall
The Lakers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 meetings with the Bulls
The ‘under’ is 9-2 in the Bulls last 11 games
The ‘under’ is 11-3 in the last 14 meetings between these two teams
NBA Picks and Predictions: Los Angeles Lakers at Chicago Bulls
I think the Bulls are the team that will be more motivated to win this game. The Bulls are great on the boards and I think they match up quite well with the Lakers. I expect a very hard-fought game, but I like the Bulls to end up with a close win at home.
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