Chicago Bulls vs. Boston Celtics
Tip-off: Friday, January 18, 2013 – 7:00 PM ET
TD Garden, Boston, MA
The Boston Celtics and their YouWager fans were incredibly surprised when an inferior rival ended their season-best winning streak. The Celtics need to get back on track however tonight they must meet the Chicago Bulls which are considered one of the NBA’s best road teams.
Boston (20-18) was outplayed by the New Orleans Hornets in Wednesday’s 90-78 defeat that ended a six-game victory streak. The Celtics shot a dismal 6 of 16 (37.5 percent) from the free throw line — their worst percentage since going 5 of 14 (35.7) in a defeat versus the Houston Rockets on Nov. 11, 1994 — and finished 4 of 18 from 3-point range.
The Celtics are shooting 30.0 percent from beyond the arc in its last six. The team will try to improve after only their third home defeat in their last 12 attempts.
Boston has won 11 of the last 14 basketball games — including the postseason – against Chicago at TD Garden, though the Bulls have won nine of 11 on the road and is an Eastern Conference-best 11-5 on the road.
Luol Deng hit a jumper with 3 seconds remaining in overtime to give Chicago (22-15) a 107-105 victory versus the Toronto Raptors on Wednesday. Deng, who finished with 26 points and 11 rebounds in a 101-95 home defeat versus the Celtics on Nov. 12, scored 19 against Toronto even while hurting his hamstring in the first quarter.
Online sports experts believe Chicago should have a good opportunity of earning another victory in the series if Carlos Boozer continues his solid play. He had one of his conference-leading 21 double-doubles with 21 points and 12 rebounds in the last game against Boston and scored a season-high 36 points with 12 boards Wednesday.
Boozer has averaged 24.0 points and 10.8 rebounds while shooting 55.9 percent in assisting the Bulls go 6-2 this month.
If Chicago wants to keep things going they need to slow Rajon Rondo, who is averaging 21.0 points in his last five games in the series. He scored a season-high 26 in the last NBA game.