The Portland Trail Blazers may still be shell-shocked by what Stephen Curry did to them on Sunday. A career-high 62 points will do that to a team. So the Blazers get a much easier task in trying to take down the Chicago Bulls at home. After starting the season 0-3, the Bulls have won three of four games. Two of those wins are against the Washington Wizards and the other is a win over the Luka Doncic-less Dallas Mavericks. So it’s hard to take anything away from what the Bulls have been doing lately. That could either cloud our judgement or make us underestimate Chicago going across the country to Portland. Let’s take a look at the lines and make some picks.
Chicago Bulls vs. Portland Trail Blazers, 10:30 p.m. ET NBATV
Pick ATS: Bulls +9.5
My judgement is 100 percent clouded. The Bulls may not be picking up quality wins but they are wins nonetheless. Zach LaVine is coming off 39 points against the Mavericks, so the Blazers still need to figure out how to contain him. The Blazers really haven’t played a weak opponent this season, so that gives me some pause.
This is more of a testament to coach Billy Donovan and the fact his team should improve while gaining some confidence. This feels like a game that will be a track meet and high scoring. The Bulls have the fire power to keep up with LaVine, Coby White and Lauri Markkanen. They’ve got some wing defenders to help against CJ McCollum and Damian Lillard. So I’m going to take the points.
Player Prop: CJ McCollum O22.5 points (-139)
CJ is leading the Blazers in scoring this season with 28 points per game. He’s eclipsed this number in five of six games this season. Like I mentioned above, the Blazers have had a brutal schedule with all their games coming against playoff-caliber teams. The Bulls are not exactly that. Chicago is one of the worst defensive teams in the NBA and play at a very fast pace. The number on this line isn’t great but it’s another safe player prop that makes a lot of sense.
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