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Bulls vs. Magic preview and open thread: looking to bounce back after worst loss of the season

Can Chicago snap a two game losing streak?

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Chicago Bulls v Houston Rockets Photo by Logan Riely/NBAE via Getty Images

It hasn’t been the best week of basketball for the Chicago Bulls. After a blowout loss at home to the Pacers on Monday, they suffered their worst loss of the season by falling to the Houston Rockets on Wednesday. Chicago was in a good spot at halftime, up nine, but then crumbled in the second half. They got outscored by 17 in the third quarter and couldn’t get the stops they needed in the fourth, ultimately leading to the 118-113 defeat. It was a bitterly tough pill to swallow for this Chicago team with back to back losses after a productive road trip last week. With the loss the Bulls are now sitting at 12-7, tied for second in the Eastern Conference. They are two games back of the first place Brooklyn Nets.

Despite the recent mini-slump in play, the Bulls still have a lot to feel good about. This team has shown an ability at the start of the season to bounce back from bad losses and now tonight is another chance to do so. This will be the first of three games in four days for the Bulls.

The Orlando Magic will be the opponent for tonight. They are currently at the bottom of the Eastern Conference with a record of 4-15. Orlando will also be looking to get back to winning ways as well as they are in the midst of a four game losing streak. Their last win came nine days ago against the New York Knicks. After getting blown out by the Bucks on Monday, the Magic had a more competitive loss in their most recent game. Despite double doubles from Mo Bamba and Wendell Carter Jr. along with 17 points from Jalen Suggs, they fell to the Charlotte Hornets 106-99. This Orlando team has a lot of bright young players on its roster with Suggs and Franz Wagner being the two new rookies. WCJ has had a brilliant start to the season, averaging career highs in points per game, two, and three point percentages respectively. He’s also tied for his career high average in rebounds per game. With Nikola Vucevic just coming back to full strength, the battle of the bigs will be a matchup to watch in this one. Bamba and WCJ may give Chicago problems at the center spot and it will be up to the Bulls to find a way to neutralize them.

Injury Report:

There is nobody listed on Chicago’s injury report other than Patrick Williams.

As for Orlando, they will be missing a key contributor in Cole Anthony, who was ruled out with a right ankle sprain. Former Bulls Michael Carter-Williams (left ankle) and E’Twuan Moore (left knee sprain) are out with their respective injures. Markelle Fultz and Jonathan Isaac are listed as out while they recover from left knee injuries.

Game Time: 6PM CT

TV: NBC Sports Chicago

Odds: The Bulls are listed as nine and a half point favorites. As for the total, the over/under is set at 211.5 at most places but you can find 212 as well. (All info via the Action Network)