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Bulls Look to Put Halters on Nets

Having been whitewashed by Brooklyn in the opening game of the first round series, Chicago will look to gain a measure of revenge when the two sides meet again on Monday night.

Tip-off is scheduled for 8:00 PM ET from Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY.

Game 1 Recap

Deron Williams led Brooklyn to a statement win in Game 1.

Deron Williams led Brooklyn to a statement win in Game 1.

For Chicago, Saturday’s Game 1 didn’t exactly go according to plan. Playing in a first playoff game since 2007, the Nets got off to a red hot start taking an early 25-14 lead at the end of the first quarter. That lead was padded to 60-35 at halftime, a deficit that would prove too much for Tom Thibodeau’s side to come back from.

The Bulls failed to defend the Nets, giving up double figures to no fewer than six players, including 22 for Deron Williams and 21 for Brook Lopez. The Nets shot 55.8 percent from the field and 42.9 percent from three-point range.

Chicago meanwhile spluttered, shooting just 25.0 percent from beyond the arc and 68.2 percent from the free-throw line. Carlos Boozer paced the side with 25 points while Nate Robinson (17 pts) and Marco Belinelli (13pts) offered solid contributions off the bench. Luol Deng, who for so much of the season has carried the Derrick Rose-less Bulls on his shoulders, had just six points in 38 minutes.

The 106-89 final score marked the first time either side had breached 100 points during the head-to-head series this season. The 17-point deficit was larger than any of the four previous meetings this campaign. In fact, the deficit in those four meetings combined was just 18 points.

Chicago failed to cover the spread (+4.5) against Brooklyn for the first time since Dec. 15, the first time the sides met this season. The Bulls are now 3-2-0 ATS when playing the Nets.

The total (181.5) went over for a third time in the season series.

Game 2 Betting Options

Marco Belinelli and the Bulls will need to fight hard to take Game 2 from the Nets.

Marco Belinelli and the Bulls will need to fight hard to take Game 2 from the Nets.

When props bets were released last week, odds makers favored this series going seven games, with Brooklyn picking up the decisive victory. If Brooklyn puts on another performance like Saturday’s, a seven-game battle will look highly unlikely.

After an impressive performance in Game 1, Brooklyn will enter Game 2 as the bookie’s favorite. The spread opened at 4.5.

Brooklyn (39-41-2 ATS) fared better than Chicago (36-46-0 ATS) this season, but the Bulls had the Nets’ number. Of course, that changed in Saturday’s game, despite Brooklyn’s poor home record (16-23-2 ATS).

Chicago has fared well on the road this season, going 23-18-0 ATS. The Bulls were 21-17-0 ATS when playing as the underdog, compared to the Nets who were 20-23-2 ATS as the favorite. If normality resumes, the Bulls could get something against the spread on Monday night. However, Chicago closed out the season 3-8-0 ATS, a downward trend that could prove telling during this series.

After Saturday’s game saw the total go over, the over/under opened slightly higher at 183. Until that game, the Bulls and Nets had not exceeded 182 points this season.

The Nets (41-41-0) split the over/under evenly this season, while Chicago (37-45-0) favored the under.



GAME 1: Chicago 89, Brooklyn 106 (Brooklyn leads series 1-0)

GAME 2: Chicago at Brooklyn (Mon, Apr. 22, 8:00 PM ET)

GAME 3: Brooklyn at Chicago (Thu, Apr. 25, 8:30 PM ET)

GAME 4: Brooklyn at Chicago (Sat, Apr. 27, 2:00 PM ET)

GAME 5: Chicago at Brooklyn (Mon, Apr. 29, TBC) *

GAME 6: Brooklyn at Chicago (Thu, May 2, TBC) *

GAME 7: Chicago at Brooklyn (Sat, May 4, TBC) *

*If necessary

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