NBA Picks: Bulls vs. Nets Game 1

Jordan Sharp

Saturday, April 20, 2013 3:58 PM UTC

Saturday, Apr. 20, 2013 3:58 PM UTC

In what the NBA Odds makers consider the closest of all the first round matchups in the East playoffs, the Bulls head into Brooklyn tonight to play the Nets in their first playoff series in Brooklyn.

NBA Playoff Picks: Bulls vs. Nets

The NBA Odds for this one are pretty close, as the Nets are only -4 ½ favorites, which is the lowest of any of the Game 1 NBA Playoff Odds. The total for this matchup is also one of the lowest of the first games at 181, after it opened at 183.

Playoff health in Chicago

While the Nets come into this game healthy and ready, the Bulls have more tape and bandages over their limbs than a professional boxer. At least three would be starters are dealing with nagging injuries and I’m not sure if Chicago is going to be able to beat the Nets with so many hurt.

Joakim Noah is still dealing with plantar fasciitis and he will in no way be his old self in this series. Of course Derrick Rose is not likely to play, and there are several other key Bulls’ reserves who are not quite 100%.

The good news is if they can just get it done on the defensive end, they give themselves a chance to win the series. While I think Brooklyn will win this one in 6 games, the Bulls should not be far away from being able to win, especially in Game 1.

The Bulls were historically undervalued this season when playing on the road, and even though they dipped a little bit to close the season, Chicago when playing even only close to full strength is still a good team. At +4 ½, the Bulls might have some value for our NBA picks, depending on who is playing and how many minutes. 

Brooklyn’s first run

It’s been six years since the Nets’ franchise last saw a playoff berth, and we are all about to find out plenty of things, including what kind of fan base Brooklyn has carved out of a Knicks dominated city. The Nets might just be overvalued here tonight, but that doesn’t mean I don’t think they are going to win tonight. While I don’t see an immense amount of value on either team on the spread, the Nets’ moneyline might not be a bad idea.

Check out the Series picks article on the Nets vs. Bulls!


The Sharp Pick 

I think we are about to see a very defensive oriented game tonight, as both teams will be bringing it on the defensive end. We see this every year in the playoffs. Totals drop way down because every point in these games matter.

Even though the number has dropped two whole points in the last two days, I still think there is some value on the under tonight. Unlike the game that will follow this one, which I think the total is a bit too low, I think this one is still high.

These two teams have cashed the under in three of their last five regular season meetings, four of which that were this season. In their last ten meetings, the Bulls have held the Nets to under 90 points on average. Obviously that takes into account some of the bad years, but in their four meetings this season, the Nets have only averaged 87.5 points per game against Chicago. With the Bulls’ horrible road scoring as well, the under is whispering my name. 

My Pick: UNDER 181 ½ @ Bovada

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