The Chicago Bulls host the Washington Wizards in a matchup of Eastern Conference playoff hopefuls on Monday night. The Bulls return home after splitting a two-game series in Orlando, while the Wizards wrap up a four-game road trip.
Both teams enter play with two wins in their last five games and are on the outside of the playoff picture looking in. Let’s find the right value plays.
Washington Wizards Betting Preview: A Rocky Road Back
It has been a rough patch of reality for Washington after a Covid outbreak in mid-January. After not having played any games for about two weeks, the Wizards are just 2-7 since returning to the court.
Russell Westbrook has not quite been himself since the team returned. Since then, he has scored 20 or more points just once in seven games. His rebound and assist numbers are down as well. Westbrook has also sat out all back-to-backs this season, but head coach Scott Brooks said there is a chance he will play in Chicago.
It is quite the opposite tale for teammate Bradley Beal. In the nine games since the team’s outbreak, Beal is averaging 27 points and just under four assists per game.
Chicago Bulls Betting Preview: A Hobbled Squad
The Bulls have been one of the NBA’s most erratic teams this year. They have either won games in bunches or lost them just the same. A 118-92 blowout win in their second game in Orlando curbed a stretch of five losses in six games, but health remains an issue for Billy Donovan’s side.
Wendell Carter Jr. remains out for a few weeks with a quad contusion. Otto Porter Jr will miss his fourth straight game due to back spasms, and Lauri Markkanen is doubtful with a right shoulder sprain. He missed Chicago’s matchup on Saturday.
Aside from Zach Lavine’s All Star-caliber efforts, other role players have stepped into the spotlight. Thaddeus Young (13.7 ppg, 7.0 rpg & 6.5 apg) has been rock solid over the past two weeks. Denzel Valentine has become a reliable scoring option off the bench, and 4th overall pick Patrick Williams netted a career-high 20 along with a double-double in two games in Orlando.
Wizards vs Bulls Betting Odds & Lines
The Bulls have opened as favorites at -2.5 on MyBookie with a total of 237.5. Chicago is -135 on the moneyline, while the Wizards (+115) come in as ML underdogs.
Free Betting Pick
These two teams have been difficult to pinpoint, but the Bulls showed their defensive ability in Orlando on Saturday night. The 92 points allowed to the Magic was Chicago’s best defensive effort of the season by far. I expect Donovan’s side to double down on their efforts on Monday.
Despite both teams struggling to find the win column, the Bulls have been the team with better form, and laying the 2.5 points is justified. I expect a similar defensive effort from the Bulls against a tired Wizards team, so I will also come back with the under.
The Pick: Bulls -2.5 (-110) & Under 237.5 (-120)