NBA Picks Bulls vs. Thunder -12.5

David Lawrence

Thursday, December 19, 2013 12:22 PM GMT

Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013 12:22 PM GMT

The Oklahoma City Thunder are a massive 12.5-point favorite on Thursday night as the Chicago Bulls visit. It’s easy to see why: the Thunder are a perfect 12-0 at home this season and enter the matchup riding a league-best seven-game winning streak. It’s pretty clear that the Thunder should win but will they cover the 12.5?

The Chicago Bulls can win because…

Is there a reason? The Bulls have basically packed it in already – and we’re only in December. The Bulls are just 7-16 against the spread this season and 3-9 in road games.

About the only reason you’re taking the Bulls is that you’re thinking that – even though they might be tired playing their fourth game in six nights – their defense might be able to keep this within the spread. They allow just 92.4 points per game, which is third in the NBA. You’re banking on that defense if you’re adding the Bulls to your NBA picks.

The Oklahoma City Thunder can win because…

They are flat-out balling right now. While the Portland Trail Blazers and the San Antonio Spurs get more attention in the national media, the Thunder have quietly been the best team in the West over the last month. They’ve now won 15 of their last 16 games and are looking like the team to beat.

The Thunder are the second-highest scoring team at home as they average 107.7 points per game. The Bulls simply don’t have the same firepower to match up as they average the second-fewest amount of points on the road at 90.3. That’s really all you need to know when examining the NBA odds here.

Outlook & Pick

The numbers just don’t look good for the Bulls. They’ve lost five of six and 11 of their last 14. That includes back-to-back ugly home losses to Toronto and Orlando. If they can’t beat those teams, don’t expect them to win in Oklahoma City. The Bulls are also in a back-to-back situation on the road and will be playing their third game in four nights. Take the Thunder with your NBA picks.

Pick: Thunder -12.5 at BetOnline

[gameodds]5/250692/?r-1=43-19-349/us[/gameodds]

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