Both sides will enter this contest with one win apiece. Despite their difficulties this NBA campaign, the visiting Boston Celtics are comfortably in the playoff reckoning. Brad Stevens’ men are resting at the 6th spot in the East with a 35-31 record behind them. The C’s are trailing the fifth-placed Atlanta Hawks by just one game.
Meanwhile, the Chicago Bulls’ chances of qualifying for the play-in tournament are slim, as they are 3.5 games behind the tenth-placed Washington Wizards at the moment. Billy Donovan’s side have not fared well this season, despite adding key pieces at the 2021 trade deadline. The Bulls are 11th in their conference, thanks to a 27-39 record.
However, both sides are riding on winning momentum at the moment, and their matchup could produce a fiercely competitive game.
Boston Celtics vs Chicago Bulls: Injury Report
The Boston Celtics will roll out at the United Center arena without Jaylen Brown, who has been ruled out due to a right ankle sprain. Brown, the 2021 All-Star, is averaging 24.7 points per game on 48.4% shooting from the field.
The C’s primary center Robert Williams III has been listed as questionable, while another frontcourt player, Tristan Thompson, has been listed as probable for their matchup against the Chicago Bulls.
Shooting guard Romeo Langford is currently in the NBA’s concussion protocol and has been listed as probable for Friday’s contest.
The Chicago Bulls have a healthy roster, with only one player finding his way onto the injury report. Troy Brown Jr. could miss another game due to an ankle-related injury that kept him on the sidelines in their previous matchup against the Charlotte Hornets.
In some good news for Bulls fans, Zach LaVine is back on the floor after missing action for the past few weeks due to the league’s health and safety protocols.
Boston Celtics vs Chicago Bulls: Predicted Lineups
With Brown remaining on the sidelines, the Boston Celtics may decide to use the same starting five they deployed against the Orlando Magic on Wednesday.
Coach Brad Stevens could send Kemba Walker to join Marcus Smart in the backcourt. Walker is coming off a 32-point outing in a game-winning presentation for his side.
Celtics superstar Jayson Tatum and new acquisition Evan Fournier will take their places on the two forward positions on the wing. If Robert Williams III remains out, Tristan Thompson could take his place as the anchor.
The Chicago Bulls could also use the same lineup that earned them a favorable result in their previous matchup against the Hornets.
The returning All-Star Zach LaVine will hit the floor alongside Coby White. The guard duo are expected to take their respective positions in the backcourt. Patrick Williams and former Celtics big-man Daniel Theis will join their teammates on the wing as the two forwards.
Coming in at center will be none other than Nikola Vucevic. The Montenegrin big man has been playing the game at a high level despite their losing record. He tallied a team-high 29 points to go along with 14 boards in their win over the Hornets.
Boston Celtics vs Chicago Bulls: Predicted Starting 5s
Point Guard – Kemba Walker | Shooting Guard – Marcus Smart | Small Forward – Jayson Tatum | Power Forward – Evan Fournier | Center – Tristan Thompson
Point Guard – Coby White | Shooting Guard – Zach LaVine | Small Forward – Patrick Williams | Power Forward – Daniel Theis | Center – Nikola Vucevic