Free NBA Picks: Hawks Road Woes Makes Atlanta The NBA Pick When Facing Bulls

Joe Gavazzi

Monday, March 28, 2016 1:30 PM UTC

Monday, Mar. 28, 2016 1:30 PM UTC

The Atlanta Hawks travel to the Windy City tonight to face the Chicago Bulls in an Eastern Conference matchup. Get a preview on the game & your NBA picks inside. 

Atlanta Hawks vs. Chicago Bulls
A quick look at the Eastern Conference standings shows that only 7 games in the loss column separate the No. 3 seeded Hawks from the No. 10 seeded Washington Wizards. A closer inspection of these standings shows these 8 teams to be locked in a pair of 4-team races for the upcoming playoffs.  

Atlanta has a record of 44-30 SU. Along with Boston, Miami and Charlotte, the Hawks are battling for the No. 3 spot. The teams are separated by only 1 game in the loss column. All 4 of these teams are playing good ball right now and remain well focused.  

Further down the standings is a group of 4 teams, Indiana, Detroit, Chicago and Washington, who are vying for the final 2 playoff spots. 7th place Indiana at 39-34 SU leads 10th place Washington, who is 36-37 SU by 3 games. The Bulls currently occupy the No. 9 spot at 36-36 SU. Out of these 8 teams, it appears that Chicago is playing with the least motivation.  

For, the final weeks of the Bulls’ season could be described as “beyond bounce back.” There are few teams who are playing worse than the Chicago Bulls. They are playing as if they would rather go to the beach than be eliminated in 4 games by Cleveland. Last week, Chicago lost twice to the Knicks, then had a “no show” performance in Orlando with a 111-89 drubbing. Far more negative comments than positive are emanating from the Chicago locker room.  


Betting Analysis
With 7 of their next 8 games against probable playoff teams, it could be sooner rather than later that Chicago is eliminated. At the heart of the Chicago issues is a defense that, in the last 16 games, has allowed 108.5 PPG per 100 opponent possessions. With a (-7) net margin in those 16 games, they are better than only New Orleans, Phoenix and Philly.  

At the other end of the spectrum is an Atlanta team, who is on a 13-3 SU ATS run. Unlike Chicago, it has been keyed by a defense that is allowing just 40% from the field and 30% from the arc. Eight Atlanta players scored 10 or more points in Saturday’s 112-95 win at Detroit. 

In a matchup of apparent super-surger vs. towel-tosser, I invite you to put the NBA odds in your favor and join me in my NBA pick on the Atlanta Hawks tonight.

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Free NBA Pick: Atlanta -3
Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle

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