Atlanta Hawks vs. Chicago Bulls
The Chicago Bulls host the Atlanta Hawks for Game Five on Tuesday night with the series tied 2-2. The Bulls are 9-point favorites over the Hawks with an over/under point total set at 181.
The Atlanta Hawks showcased their athleticism in game four as Josh Smith nearly had a triple double to lead the charge. It was a refreshing display of talent out of the young Smith who can be lethal when attacking the rim, unfortunately he had settled for far too many outside jumpers in previous contests. Joe Johnson rebounded nicely as well in the win as the Hawks were able to harness their minds and hearts enough to compete for a full 48 minutes. Unfortunately for Atlanta, we know that they can revert into a gear that’s difficult to watch and littered with mental errors. The Hawks should have significant confidence entering this contest after the last game as well as having won the opener in Chicago.
The Chicago Bulls came back down to earth after Derrick Rose’s 44-point night in game three. Kyle Korver had a miserable night off the bench shooting just 1-8 while making some costly errors on defense, but the re-emergence of Carlos Boozer’s jump shot was particularly encouraging. When it comes down to it, the Bulls need to look to their defense first and foremost and the effort simply wasn’t there last game as they allowed 100 points. The Hawks may have turned a corner in solving some of Chicago’s defensive schemes, so the real key for the Bulls in this contest will likely be basic hustle.
This is a difficult spot to call, as both of the Bulls wins were also covers. I don’t think they’re so lucky this time as the Hawks ignited a spark and know they can matchup very well here. I’m going to take the Hawks plus the 9 although I don’t feel thy will win the game outright.
Atlanta Hawks +9 Chicago Bulls
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