Bulls vs. Heat Marquee Clash: Take 'Under' As Your Sharp NBA Pick

Jordan Sharp

Tuesday, March 1, 2016 4:52 PM GMT

Chicago is clinging to life in the Eastern Conference playoff standings, and with injuries still taking their toll. The NBA Odds are favoring the Heat at -6 ½, with a total of 199 points. 

Contenders No More?
Before the season started, a lot of people (myself included) were picking the Heat and Bulls to finish second and third behind the Cavaliers in the Eastern Conference. While we figured the Heat would have to stave off injuries to Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade to do it, no one expected the Bulls to be as banged up as they are now.

Tonight, the Bulls will once again be missing several starters, but the status of Derrick Rose is the big question mark for tonight. Rose has missed the Bulls’ last two games with hamstring soreness, but the Bulls’ point guard did make it through most of practice yesterday, and as long as he is present and participating at shoot around, he will probably be good to go tonight.

Unfortunately for the Heat, Chris Bosh might be done for the season once again, and if that’s the case, their chances at getting to the Eastern Conference Finals just went from good to long shot. For the Bulls though, they might be in danger of falling out of the playoff picture all together if they can’t get healthy and start getting some wins fast. Chicago is currently in a tie with the Hornets for the 6th seed, but right behind them are the Pacers and Pistons, who are both also 11½ games back of first place in the East. A few more slip-ups and the Bulls could find themselves on the outside looking in for the first time in years. Let's review the latest trends and the NBA odds now.

 

The Sharp Pick
If Rose misses the game tonight, the Bulls may be in trouble offensively. Even if he does play, the Heat have been very good at defending guards this season, and the Bulls are playing much worse offensively with all their injuries already. So, if Rose misses tonight, I think the under could be a valuable wager for tonight’s smaller slate of games.

These two teams already get into defensive battles when they play most of the time, as the under has now cashed in their loan meeting this season and in their last four games against one another overall. With all their injuries, the Bulls are only shooting about 43 percent from the floor with Rose and the rest of the crew potentially out tonight, and without Bosh the Heat haven’t been much better. Without Bosh on the court this season, the Heat are shooting only 46 percent from the floor. While it has helped the production of Hassan Whiteside coming off the bench and cleaning up against teams’ second units, for this game Whiteside will likely own the paint both on offense and defense.

While the Heat have been playing faster without Bosh, if Rose and company misses tonight, the Bulls are going to play at a snails pace, playing half court offense every time down by throwing the ball into Pau Gasol and having him go to work. While the total is low, it may not be low enough, seeing as while writing this, some sportsbooks already have the line down to 198½. Take the Under at 201 while you can as your NBA pick, and if Rose is out again tonight, it should be a great wager for Tuesday evening.

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NBA Pick: UNDER 201
Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes