The Chicago Bulls will head north to take on the Milwaukee Bucks in the first game of a home-and-home on Thursday night. Nothing like a little divisional rivalry to kick off the weekend.
The Bulls will play on consecutive nights this Thursday and Friday, playing the same team in both games – the Bucks. These two teams have seemingly met in the middle of the Central Division for the past couple of years. Chicago has slipped a little since the Thibodeau era and glory days of Derrick Rose, while it feels safe to say that Milwaukee is just a healthy Khris Middleton away from being a true contender in the Eastern Conference after years of plugging away in mediocrity.
These two teams have had their fair share duds and great matchups, but things got bumped up a notched when the two sides met in the playoffs two years ago. The Bulls prevailed, but were pushed hard by the Bucks, who went down but not without a fight. And that fight was highlighted by a textbook tackle of former-Bull Mike Dunleavy, Jr. by Giannis Antetokounmpo.
Speaking of Antetokounmpo, there might not be a better player in the entire conference, save for LeBron James. The young point forward really is that good. He went off in a huge Milwaukee win over the Cleveland Cavaliers just a few weeks ago and is currently among the best in the league is just about every measurable category. He also joins Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder as the only two players in the entire league that lead their respective teams in points, assists, rebounds, and steals.
Of course, the Greek Freak isn’t alone. The Bucks might be missing Middleton but Milwaukee still has Chicago product, Jabari Parker. He’s still a long way off from hitting his ceiling and the expectations for him are still sky-high, but that doesn’t mean he isn’t a double-double threat every night. Add a consistent group of rotation pieces, big man Greg Monroe, and new signing Matthew Dellavedova and you’ve got a solid group.
Of course, none of this considers Tony Snell. Snell will be facing off against his old side on Thursday, looking to knock down a few 3-pointers to remind them of what they’re missing.
However the action goes down, it is sure to be a good one so here’s how you can catch the game.
Matchup: Chicago Bulls (13-11) at Milwaukee Bucks (11-12)
Where: BMO Harris Bradley Center
Time: 7:00 PM CST
TV: WGN-TV, TNT
Radio: 890 WLS-AM
Stream: NBA League Pass TNT OT