Bulls vs. Hawks Updated Odds, Preview, Prediction: Chicago Has Advantage Over Atlanta’s Decimated Roster
Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images. Pictured: Zach LaVine (Bulls)
- The Bulls vs. Hawks spread has dropped half a point in the last few hours, going from Chicago -5 to -4.5.
- As of 3:30 p.m. ET, there's a small chance Trae Young could return for Atlanta, which would make this game much closer to a pick'em.
- Without him, our analyst likes the Bulls to win handily against a short-handed Hawks team.
Editor’s Note: Trae Young has cleared health and safety protocols and can return to the court Monday for the Atlanta Hawks. For real-time injury updates, check out our FantasyLabs NBA news page.
Updated Bulls vs. Hawks Odds
|Time||7:30 p.m. ET|
|Odds updated at 3:30 p.m. ET and via FanDuel.|
The Atlanta Hawks will be limping out with a thin roster as they host the Chicago Bulls on Monday evening.
The Hawks have been hit hard with the recent league-wide outbreak of COVID-19, and are missing a lot of firepower. Trae Young, Danilo Gallinari, John Collins and Kevin Huerter are just a few names that will be inactive on Monday night.
The Bulls were almost back to full strength after suffering their own outbreak that resulted in three postponed games. That was before their point guard Lonzo Ball became the team’s third player to enter the health and safety protocols on Sunday, joining Alfonzo McKinnie, Tony Bradley and coach Billy Donovan.
However, the Bulls will still have their stars Zach LaVine and DeMar DeRozan active.
Chicago is on the second night of a back-to-back and is currently on a three-game winning streak. Can the Bulls keep the momentum up and take advantage of this battered Hawks team?
Let’s break down the matchup below.
Chicago Bulls Have Revenge on Mind?
The Bulls have continued to impress, boasting a 20-10 record, good for the second seed in the East. In addition, they’ve consistently outperformed market expectations, with a 19-11 (63.3%) record against the spread.
They haven’t showed much rust since their week-long hiatus from Dec. 12 to Dec. 19. They’ve won three in a row and are still ranked in the top 10 in both Offensive (7th) and Defensive Rating (9th), per NBA Advanced Stats.
They have a triple threat on offense with LaVine, DeRozan and talented big man Nikola Vucevic. Vucevic has been struggling from the field this season (shooting 40.9%). However, he is coming off of a nice 16-point, 15-rebound game in their win against the Pacers.
I think this recent outing will give him some confidence against the Hawks’ porous defense. Even with Clint Capela guarding the paint, the Hawks are 20th in opponent’s points in the paint allowed (46.8).
The Bulls were swept by the Hawks in all three of their matchups last season. This is a brand-new campaign, but I think some of these players will have some revenge on their minds and be more motivated to come out strong.
In fact, road favorites who lost their previous matchup have gone 172-139-9 (55.3%) ATS since the 2019-2020 season, per the Sports Data Query Language at Gimme the Dog.
Atlanta Hawks Have Limited Firepower Active
On Sunday morning, Collins and Jalen Johnson joined a lengthy list of Hawks players to enter into the health and safety protocols. This list also includes Young, Gallinari, Huerter, Sharife Cooper, Wes Iwundu, Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot, Onyeka Okongwu and Lou Williams.
The Hawks promoted Anthony “Cat” Barber and Malik Ellison from their G-League affiliate to 10-day hardship contracts on Saturday.
As of Monday morning, the active players are Bogdan Bogdanovic, Skylar Mays, Cam Reddish, Delon Wright, Malcolm Hill, Lance Stephenson, Gorgui Dieng, Capela, Barber and Ellison.
This is really going to be a struggle on offense for the Hawks. They simply do not have the firepower to keep up with the Bulls’ offense.
The Hawks were amazing at home last season, but are only 7-9 ATS at the State Farm Arena this season.
Wright played well in his last game, scoring 20 points against the Knicks on Christmas Day. With Ball and Caruso out for the Bulls, I can see Wright having some success, and I will be keeping an eye on some of his player props on Monday evening.
There could be some Bulls players that may sit out the second night of a back-to-back, so keep your eye out on the FantasyLabs news feed for any updates.
Barring any of those last-minute scratches for the Bulls or any of the Hawks’ key players cleared from the protocols, this line seems a bit short.
I will happily be taking Bulls -4.5 (up to -5) in a spot where they will be seeking revenge and have a roster advantage over the decimated Hawks.
Pick: Bulls -4.5 (up to -5)