Oddsmakers have set the line for the January 25th NBA free betting pick at Cleveland -1 when they host Chicago on Saturday. The Cavs are a pretty bad team in losing six straight and 11 of their last 13, but the Bulls aren’t exactly tearing up the league.
Chicago lost by 17 on Friday night at home to Sacramento as -1.5 favorite, and are playing on 0 days rest in Cleveland. The public is split nearly right down the middle (53% CHI) in this battle of the bad.
Bulls Set to Struggle on the Back-to-Back?
Chicago isn’t necessarily a deep team. The loss of Wendell Carter, Jr. to an ankle injury made them one of the worst defenses vs. the post (30th vs. the PF, 27th vs. the C) and that’s only been exacerbated by the news of PF Lauri Markkanen missing 4-6 weeks with a pelvis injury. Being injured as well as tired isn’t a great combination for the Bulls heading into the January 25th NBA free betting pick.
The Bulls being dominated by 17 on Friday by Sacramento may in a strange way help them for Saturday night’s tilt. Only Zach LaVine logged more than 30 minutes vs. the Kings – unfortunately he’s also the player Chicago is most reliant on. LaVine had 21 of his 42 points in the 4th quarter last Saturday in the Bulls’ 2 point win over Cleveland.
Can Chicago buckle down their back court defense on 0 days rest? The Cavs will exploit the post but have also been getting great production from the back court combo of Collin Sexton and Darius Garland. Chicago is also dealing with injuries to their back court as Tomas Satoransky (ankle), Ryan Arcidiacono (elbow), and Chandler Hutchinson (shoulder) will all play but with ailments.
The Time is Right for a Rare Cleveland Win
The Cavaliers have lost 6 straight, but it’s been thelast 3 defeats that have really stung. Cleveland lost by 12 at home to a Washington team on the back-to-back on Thursday, were beaten down by the lowly Knicks on Monday, and blew a 19 point lead in the loss tothe Bulls last Saturday.
Despite their troubling go of it as of late, there are some reasons to like Cleveland as a one point favorite on Saturday night. The biggest being that the duo of Tristan Thompson and Kevin Love should have free reign in the paint vs. the atrocious Bulls inside defense. That duo combined for 43 points last Saturday vs. Chicago. Sexton added 26 vs. Chicago, and has 25+ in 4 of the last 6. Garland has at least 13 points in 8 of 10 to also give Cleveland an edge in the back court.
January 25th NBA Free Betting Pick
Chicago put up no fight on Friday night vs. the Kings and it’s hard to expect anything exceptionally on the back-to-back. Yes, Cleveland has been horrible lately, but they also probably should have won last Saturday vs. the Bulls if not for LaVine going unconscious in the 4th quarter. This game is on the road for Chicago – and on 0 days rest with an already thin team.
Pick: Cleveland Cavaliers -1