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steve_janus
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NBA FREE PICK: Chicago Bulls -6.5

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On 05/01/2012 12:43 PM in Cappers
Philadelphia vs. Chicago, 05/01/2012 20:00
Point Spread: -6½/-105 Chicago

NBA FREE PICK: Chicago Bulls -6.5

A lot of people are counting out the Bulls after watching Derrick Rose tear his ACL in the final minutes of a Game 1 win. While I agree it hurts the Bulls chances of making the NBA Finals, I don't think it will stop them from advancing past the 76ers in the first round.

Chicago features one of the deepest benches in the NBA and I look for Watson and Lucas III to step up with a big time performance in Game 2. The focus of the Bulls is on defense and rebounding, two things Rose really doesn't factor in on. Chicago is actually better defensively when Rose isn't on the floor, which is why they went 19-8 without him in the lineup during the regular season.

The media has been all over Chicago since the injury to Rose, giving them no chance to do anything in the playoffs. That should only fuel the players who will be playing tonight. I look for the Bulls to come out and play as hard as they can on the defensive side of the ball, and win game two by double-digits.

The loss of Rose could also work in their favor, as the 76ers likely won't come in with the same level of intensity knowing Chicago is without their best player. You also have to remember just how bad Philadelphia was down the stretch. Even without Rose, Chicago is the more talented team in this matchup. BET CHICAGO!

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