These sides met on just the 11th November and line up against each other once again at the Quicken Loans Arena on Saturday November 30.
It’s been a mixed start for the Bulls, who ran out 96-81 winners last time round, and despite a solid win in Detroit on Wednesday, the side have suffered 4 straight defeats before then including an overtime loss to the struggling Utah Jazz on Monday evening. Tom Thibodeau’s men still however lie second in the Central Division and are up to third in the Eastern Conference.
The Bulls will no doubt be rocked by the announcement on Saturday that former MVP Point Guard will sit out the remainder of the season after suffering a torn meniscus in his right knee during their 98-95 loss in Portland. Rose had been instrumental in the Illinois team’s season and had been scoring close to 20 points regularly throughout November, and the team will be hoping it doesn’t affect them too much.
Similarly, the Cavs will also be looking to get back to winning ways and hope to take advantage of a Bulls who have yet to see red. Cleveland have had some difficult fixtures in the last few days with a heavy defeat to Spurs, which saw the Ohio based team record only a 30.8 percent shooting record. A tough game at Miami on Wednesday will also not help the Cavs who go into a game in Boston before the big game in the Central division on Saturday.
The last few season have seen the sides match up pretty evenly. An early season win for the Bulls will give them the belief they can turn their fortunes and avoid a possible sixth straight defeat, whilst a thrilling 101-98 victory for the Cavs late last season will also give them encouragement.
It’s a tie that could go either way. The mid-week games could be instrumental in taking confidence into Saturday, whilst a big performance from key men could also be the difference between winning and losing.
It’s been an interesting week or so for British Forward Luol Deng. He combined well with Carlos Boozer for 50 points between them on Monday evening, whilst a score of 22 on Sunday ended a poor few games which saw him only score 6 during a half an hour period in Denver. His highest score of the season came at the Pistons and the Bulls will certainly be hoping the number 9 can improve on that if they are going to claim victory on Saturday.
It’ll be an interesting game for those who like to bet on the NBA. Cleveland also have a man in form, who could be the deciding factor. Despite only a battling 15 points against a well-drilled Spurs defence, Kyrie Irving has regularly been scoring highly with an average of 21.4 as well as the second highest points total of the season with 41 against the Wizards just a few weeks ago.