The New Orleans Pelicans (24-21) will be at home in Smoothie King Center when they clash with the Chicago Bulls (18-28). New Orleans opened as a 6-point favorite, while the games Over/Under (O/U) has been set at 224.5 points. Tip-off is set for 8 p.m. ET on Monday, January 22, 2018, and it can be seen on NBC Sports Chicago.
Chicago Bulls vs. New Orleans Pelicans ATS Preview
The Bulls beat the Atlanta Hawks in their last game, 113-97. Robin Lopez was the games high scorer with 20 points on 9-for-13 shooting. The Bulls knocked down 19 of their 21 free throws (90.5 percent) and had an effective field goal percentage of 0.588 (above their season average of 0.503).
The last time the Pelicans played, they topped the Memphis Grizzlies, 111-104. New Orleans DeMarcus Cousins was a key piece with 24 points, 10 rebounds and five assists. New Orleans dominated nearly every stat category in the game. They had an absurd free throw rate of 0.333 (above their season average of 0.201) and a turnover percentage of 9.8 (better than their season average of 14.0). For those same stats, Memphis put up marks of 0.183 and 13.6, respectively.
Looking at effective field goal percentage, New Orleans should have a substantial advantage. The upper-echelon Pelicans offense ranks third in the NBA in that metric at 0.551, while the porous Chicago defense is ranked 22nd in effective field goal percentage allowed (0.531). Moreover, the Bulls rank fifth in turnover percentage (13.0 percent), while the Pelicans rank 22nd in opponents turnover percentage (13.5 percent).
Both of these teams tend to go over the projected point total. Chicago games have gone over 56.5 percent of the time, while games featuring New Orleans have finished over 60.0 percent of the time. The Pelicans have the sizable advantage straight up (SU) (24-21 vs. 18-28), but the Bulls have been better against the spread (ATS) (27-16-3 vs. 24-21).
Both teams have had a player trending in the right direction over their last five games. For the Bulls, it’s been Lauri Markkanen, who has averaged 19.2 points, 7.8 rebounds and 1.2 steals, while the Pelicans have gotten great contributions from Jrue Holiday (22.6 points, 5.4 assists and 2.6 steals).
These teams have already met once this season. In that game, the two teams combined to put up 186 points, which was under the projected point total of 199.5. The Pelicans won 96-90, covering as 5.5-point favorites. The Pelicans played a nearly perfect game. They had a free throw rate of 0.195 and a turnover percentage of 11.9. For those same stats, the Bulls recorded marks of 0.091 and 14.0, respectively. Anthony Davis recorded a double-double with 27 points and 16 rebounds.
Chicago Bulls at New Orleans Pelicans Free Prediction
Predictions: SU Winner – Pelicans, ATS Winner – Bulls, O/U – Over
- The Bulls rank eighth in three pointers attempted per game (30.5) while the Pelicans rank 29th in three pointers allowed per game (31.6).
- Chicago ranks 14th in fast break points allowed per game (11.1) while New Orleans ranks 26th (13.6).
- New Orleans ranks ninth in blocks per game (5.1) while Chicago ranks 27th (3.7).
- New Orleans ranks 19th in points off turnovers per game (16.1) while Chicago ranks 28th (14.5).
- On the road, Chicago is 14-8-1 ATS with 15 overs and 8 unders.
- At home, New Orleans is 10-11 ATS with 15 overs and 6 unders.
- Chicago is 6-5 when they allow less than 100 points, while New Orleans is 7-1.
- The Pelicans are 22-14 when they score more than 100 points, while the Bulls are 16-12.
- The Bulls rank 11th in second chance points allowed per game (11.7) while the Pelicans rank 26th (13.6).
- New Orleans averages 26.2 assists per game, which ranks second in the NBA. Chicago ranks 28th in assists allowed per game (25.0).
- The Pelicans rank second in points in the paint per game (50.1) while the Bulls rank 27th (40.9).
- The Pelicans average 42.9 rebounds per game, which ranks 16th in the NBA. The Bulls rank 28th in rebounds allowed per game (45.6).
- Chicago ranks fifth in steals allowed per game (7.0) while New Orleans ranks 26th (8.6).
- New Orleans is 3-2 ATS with 4 overs and 1 under in their last five games.
- Over their last five games, Chicago is 5-0 ATS with 3 overs and 2 unders.
- The Pelicans average margin of victory in their last five games has been 4.0, up from 0.2 for the season.
- During their last five games, the Bulls have scored an average of 114.6 points per game (11.4 above their season average) and allowed an average of 110.2 points per game (1.9 above their season average).