The Memphis Grizzlies (41-20) head to the Windy City Saturday to play the Chicago Bulls (39-21). Tip-off at United Center is scheduled for 8 p.m. ET. Below, we look at the Grizzlies vs. Bulls odds and lines, and make our expert NBA picks, predictions and bets.
Memphis dropped its first game back from the All-Star break 119-114 at the Minnesota Timberwolves Thursday as a 2-point road favorite. The Grizzlies are 21-10 straight up (SU) and 22-9 against the spread (ATS) on the road.
Chicago held off the Atlanta Hawks Thursday for a 112-108 home win as a 2.5-point favorite to extend its win streak to six games (5-1 ATS). The Bulls are 24-8 SU and 22-10 ATS at home.
The Grizzlies clobbered the Bulls 119-106 in Memphis Jan. 17 as 8.5-point home favorites. Memphis has won and covered versus Chicago in three consecutive meetings.
Grizzlies at Bulls odds, spread and lines
Odds provided by Tipico Sportsbook; access USA TODAY Sports Scores and Sports Betting Odds hub for a full list. Lines last updated at 2:16 p.m. ET.
Money line (ML): Grizzlies -135 (bet $135 to win $100) | Bulls +110 (bet $100 to win $110)
Against the spread: Grizzlies -1.5 (-120) | Bulls +1.5 (-105)
Over/Under (O/U): 237.5 (O: -107 | U: -115)
Grizzlies at Bulls key injuries
SG Dillon Brooks (ankle) out
PG Lonzo Ball (knee) out
SG Alex Caruso (wrist) out
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Grizzlies at Bulls odds, lines, picks and predictions
Grizzlies 121, Bulls 108
BET the GRIZZLIES (-135) for 1.25 units for a variety of reasons.
Memphis has a couple of strength-on-weakness edges over Chicago it can and did exploit in their first meeting.
The Grizzlies like to speed up the tempo and attack the paint whereas the Bulls have the fifth-worst transition defensive efficiency and 24th in paint points per game (PPG) allowed.
Memphis won all “four factors” and outscored 64-38 in the paint and 26-9 in fastbreak points in the first Grizzlies-Bulls meeting this season.
This is also a Pros vs. Joe’s game in the betting market since most of the money is on the Grizzlies but a slight majority of the bets placed are on the Bulls, according to Pregame.com.
It’s typically wise to follow the money especially when it’s counter to the public. Plus oddsmakers are reacting to the presumed sharp money by moving Memphis’s ML from +110 on the opener up to the current price.
The Grizzlies are much deeper than the Bulls who have been super reliant on DeMar DeRozan‘s brilliance. Memphis’s bench scores 37.0 PPG (ranked eighth) and Chicago’s bench averages 26.5 PPG (ranked 29th).
GIMME the GRIZZLIES (-135) for 1.25 units.
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Against the spread
PASS because Memphis’s ML is only 15 cents on the dollar more expensive than the Grizzlies -1.5 (-120) so we don’t need to sweat a cover.
I’d bet Memphis’s ML up to -145 before taking the Grizzlies’ spread for a lesser-sized wager.
PASS with a slight “lean” towards the Under 237.5 (-115) as a fade against the betting market and situational trends.
A majority of the cash wagered is on the Over, according to Pregame.com and VegasInsider.com. That’s probably because the Grizzlies are 9-3 O/U as road favorites and the Bulls are 5-2 O/U as home underdogs.
It feels too easy to take the Over 237.5 (-107) here but, aside from that angle, I don’t have much analysis for the total.
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