Bulls vs. Nets Preview & Prediction

The Chicago Bulls are tied with the Toronto Raptors for the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs, while the Brooklyn Nets are tied with the No. 8 seed with the Indiana Pacers.

Projected Starting Lineups

Chicago Bulls (48-32)

G Derrick Rose – 18.1 ppg, 5.0 apg

G Jimmy Butler – 20.0 ppg, 5.8 rpg

F Mike Dunleavy – 9.6 ppg, 3.9 rpg

F Pau Gasol – 18.5 ppg, 11.8 rpg

C Joakim Noah – 7.2 ppg, 9.6 rpg, 4.7 apg

Brooklyn Nets (37-43)

G Deron Williams – 13.1 ppg, 6.6 apg

G Markel Brown – 4.6 ppg, 2.3 rpg

F Joe Johnson – 14.4 ppg, 4.8 rpg

F Thaddeus Young – 13.9 ppg, 5.8 rpg

C Brook Lopez – 17.3 ppg, 7.4 rpg

What to watch for:

Brooklyn’s Bench Production

The Bulls are finally starting to get fully healthy again, giving them as much depth as anyone in the league. Brooklyn’s starters will stay competitive with Chicago’s top five, but they’ll be at a disadvantage once the subs enter the game. If Jarrett Jack and Bojan Bodganovic have big games to carry the Nets' bench, they'll have a chance to win this game.

Prediction: Bulls win 106-96

Both teams will be playing with extra intensity and desperation because of their playoff positioning, but Chicago's superior talent will win out in the second half.

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