On this third game of Christmas, the San Antonio Spurs will host the Chicago Bulls, in what could be a very interesting matchup — and possibly, a major game for both teams.
For the Bulls, who’ve absolutely been struggling as of late, especially on the offensive end, could certainly use a big road-win over one of the powerhouse teams in the league. Chicago has lost five of their last six contests, and have fallen to ninth in the Eastern Conference. Jimmy Butler, who’s currently leading the team in scoring (24.4 PPG), has himself a tough match-up with superstar a Forward Kawhi Leonard guarding him.
I think he most important player for Chicago in this game is Rajon Rondo. And that might be for the entire season, perhaps. He hasn’t been anywhere near as efficient as he was in Sacramento or any season prior to that. Shooting just 38% from the field, a career-worst.
As the Spurs, I mentioned Leonard shouldn’t have too much of a problem against a Butler, but it should be a great to view. However, what should be key for San Antonio to win this game is their physical presence on both-ends, particularly in the rebounding department.
Chicago leads the NBA in Offensive and Total Rebounds per-game, and it’s been known that they never give up on plays — especially with eight year big-man Robin Lopez defining that physicality.
Some overlooked players, rather, that would make this game a great Christmas gift, is to see Jonathan Simmons have a huge game. Easily my favorite player on that Spurs roster, and has came a long way since riding the lines of the NBA Developmental League. Would also be great to see Dwyane Wade, who has the most wins on Christmas (10) to get another this year.
Should definitely be one worth watching. I picked the Spurs to win 98-90, and there’s no reason why it shouldn’t be a tough, somewhat low-scoring, defensive-minded game.
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