Nov 8, 2021; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Bulls forward DeMar DeRozan (11) celebrates with guard Lonzo Ball (2) after scoring against the Brooklyn Nets during the second half at United Center. Mandatory Credit: Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports
NBA-best Warriors host Bulls who are tied for first in the East
Steph Curry is 2nd in scoring, DeMar DeRozan is 6th and Zach LaVine is 7th
The odds and matchups can be found below with a prediction
It’s a Friday night tilt worth staying up for, with two of the nicest teams in the Association clashing at Chase Center at 10pm ET.
The NBA-best Golden State Warriors (10-1) will host the upstart Chicago Bulls (8-3), who share top spot in the Eastern Conference with the equally surprising Washington Wizards.
Both sides still aren’t at full strength, but they’re both loaded with scoring talent and enough current depth to absorb those losses.
The Warriors are favored by 5.5-points in this one, which will be broadcast nationally on ESPN.
Bulls vs Warriors Odds
Golden State Warriors
Odds as of Nov 10 at FanDuel
Warriors’ Early Dominance
They’re not exactly to the Warriors of old, but this edition is still pretty good. Golden State leads the NBA in scoring at 115.9 points a game, while shooting the three-ball at a 37.1% clip (4th) on the second-most attempts per game in the league (42.4).
The Warriors this season … without Klay and Wiseman 😳 pic.twitter.com/CEGspCCUcf
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) November 11, 2021
The Dubs are still sharing it well, as Steve Kerr’s club leads the NBA in assists at 29.8 assists per contest.
This is a team that has yet to see co-Splash Brother Klay Thompson play a game. In fact Thompson hasn’t stepped on a court for a pro game since the 2019 NBA Finals.
GState is also missing last year’s No. 2 pick James Wiseman (knee) while Draymond Green (thigh) and Damien Lee (hip) are questionable Friday.
STEPH CURRY IS A COLD-BLOODED ASSASSIN pic.twitter.com/7S0kJnP6o1
— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) November 9, 2021
Of course, Steph Curry is the engine that makes this all go. He’s coming off a 25-point, 5-rebound, 6-assist night in a 123-110 drubbing of the Timberwolves. That was after a 50-bomb he dropped on the Atlanta Hawks the game prior.
Steph is second in the league in scoring, averaging 27.4 points per game, while adding 6.5 rebounds and 6.5 assists.
Bulls’ Early Dominance
Perhaps the biggest difference to see how these teams get after opponents is assists. The Bulls don’t feature a passing kaleidoscope of sets, as they rank 17th in dimes.
It’s just so effortless@NBCSChicago | @ZachLaVine pic.twitter.com/iO8vjW9KMk
— Chicago Bulls (@chicagobulls) November 11, 2021
What they do bring is a stellar 1-2 iso punch in Zach LaVine and DeMar DeRozan, who are overwhelming the opposition with their ability to get buckets against virtually anyone.
DeRozan is sixth in the NBA in scoring, putting up 26 points a night on 48.8% shooting from the field, while adding 5.8 rebounds and 3.8 assists. LaVine is close behind in seventh, pumping out 25.8 points per game on a crisp 49.3% shooting, as well as 5.5 rebounds and 4.2 assists.
Professional bucket getter.@NBCSChicago | @DeMar_DeRozan pic.twitter.com/5HqIOasKgj
— Chicago Bulls (@chicagobulls) November 11, 2021
He was the catalyst in their recent 117-107 win over the visiting Dallas Mavericks, scoring 23 points on 8-for-12 shooting. In all, five other Bulls chipped in with 16 points or more.
But they’ll be missing their big man in this one, as Nikola Vucevic has just entered the COVID health and safety protocol. Look for the Bulls to maybe switch to a little more small ball, perhaps with lineups that will feature LaVine, DeRozan, Lonzo Ball and Alex Caruso.
Bulls vs Warriors Trends
Perhaps the biggest surprise in this Warriors renaissance season is the work on the defensive end. The Dubs rank fourth in points allowed, while holding teams to a league-low 42% shooting from the field, including 31.4% from downtown (3rd).
Strong defense leads to a JP hammer 🔨 🔨 🔨 pic.twitter.com/l20EX6gH2T
— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) November 4, 2021
The Bulls are fifth in points allowed at 102.4 per night, while holding down seventh in both field goal and three-point shooting defense.
While the Warriors actively seek out the three-ball, the Bulls are last in 3-point attempts per game at 27.3 — one of only two teams to average less than 30 jacks from deep. They do shoot it at a 7th-best rate.
“If I finish a game with no fouls, I probably didn’t play hard enough… Night in and night out, you’re going to be facing somebody who’s really freaking good at basketball. I like playing defense. I like stopping people. I like making guys frustrated.” – Alex Caruso pic.twitter.com/5mpNeQVxDO
— NBA Retweet (@RTNBA) November 6, 2021
Chicago is an impressive 8-3 ATS, and a sharp 5-2 ATS following a win. Golden State is 5-2-1 ATS as a home favorite. They’ve made hay with their home-heavy slate, starting the year 7-1 at Chase.
What’s the Best Bet?
The Bulls have the wing and perimeter defenders to at least make life difficult for Curry. If Andrew Wiggins — coming off a season-high 35 points in a win over the Timberwolves — and Jordan Poole can make shots, Golden State will be in good shape.
ARE YOU KIDDING ANDREW WIGGINS?! pic.twitter.com/31pnBhjjyW
— Golden State Warriors (@warriors) November 11, 2021
Juan Anderson Toscano, Andre Iguodala, Otto Porter Jr, Poole and Wiggins will be tested heavily as LaVine and DeRozan go to work. Chicago will be looking for secondary offense as well. Ball is coming off a 21-point, 6-reb, 6-assist night, where he drilled 7-for-10 from downtown.
It’s always a risk betting against Curry, who could go mercurial at any point, but I like the Bulls’ ability to keep it close, and leave it to their pair of dominant scorers to take turns and close things out down the stretch.
The Pick: Bulls +5.5 (-110)