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Bulls vs Knicks NBA Picks and Predictions January 3, 2024

Chicago Bulls (15-20) vs New York Knicks (18-15) game preview, picks, and predictions today.

Bulls vs Knicks:

When: 8:30 PM ET, Wednesday, January 3, 2024
Where: Madison Square Garden, New York, New York

OG Anunoby and his New York Knicks teammates were able to relax on Tuesday, one day after the forward’s arrival coincided with his new team’s most complete effort in weeks.

The Chicago Bulls won’t have any time to stew over their disastrous first half in a lopsided loss on Tuesday.

The Knicks will look to string together consecutive victories and the Bulls will aim to conclude a back-to-back set in winning style Wednesday night, when New York hosts Chicago in a battle of longtime rivals.

The Knicks were off Tuesday after holding off a fourth-quarter comeback attempt by the visiting Minnesota Timberwolves in a 112-106 decision on Monday afternoon. The Bulls concluded a home-and-home set with the Philadelphia 76ers by falling on the road on Tuesday, 110-97.

Julius Randle was the Knicks’ star on Monday, when he scored 12 of his game-high 39 points in the final six minutes as New York held off Minnesota’s rally from a 22-point, third-quarter deficit.

In addition, Anunoby looked like a much-needed asset two days after he was acquired by the Knicks in a blockbuster trade that sent RJ Barrett and Immanuel Quickley to the Toronto Raptors.

Anunoby shot 3-for-6 from 3-point range and finished with 17 points. The 6-foot-7 forward also had six rebounds and two steals while splitting time on defense between covering 6-foot-4 Anthony Edwards and 7-footer Karl-Anthony Towns.

“Amazing,” Randle said. “Seems like the perfect piece that complements our team very well. He does a lot of timely things out there, and it was big for us to get that win.”

The result snapped a three-game losing streak for the Knicks, who are 6-8 since Dec. 5, a span in which they managed back-to-back wins just once (Dec. 18-20) and allowed fewer than 110 points only three times.

“I thought the first game he was impressive — really, just to be ready and to figure it out on the fly,” Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau said. “Played smart, played off people well, played great defense, hustled, moved without the ball, shot good shots, made good plays.”

The Bulls were on the wrong end of good plays on Tuesday, when Philadelphia’s Joel Embiid racked up 31 points, 15 rebounds and 10 assists in just 31 minutes. The 76ers raced out to a 43-18 lead after one quarter and led 73-42 at the half.

The Bulls missed their first 13 3-point shots and didn’t connect from deep until more than midway through the second quarter. Chicago shot a season-worst 18.9 percent (7-for-37, 18.9 percent) from beyond the arc.

“I thought we generated good looks, I thought we got into the teeth of the defense, I thought we spread it out and got really good open corner threes,” Bulls coach Billy Donovan said. “We just didn’t make any. But it can’t impact the other end of the floor.”

The Bulls fell to 10-7 this season without star guard Zach LaVine, who hasn’t played since Nov. 28 due to a right foot injury. LaVine might be back within a week, Donovan said on Tuesday.

Chicago has produced winning streaks of four games and three games without LaVine but has taken three double-digit losses in its past five games dating back to Dec. 23.

“We have to move forward from this, just with a game (Wednesday),” Donovan said.

–Field Level Media

Free NBA Picks and Predictions:

In this Bulls vs Knicks Wednesday Night basketball game, I’m on the Knicks Team Total Over 112.5 Points -140.

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