NBA Preview from The Sports Network|
Wednesday, March 19th
(All times Eastern)
Chicago Bulls (37-30) at Philadelphia 76ers (15-52), 7 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Philadelphia 76ers may want to keep Tony Wroten in
the starting lineup to provide a boost in the offense.
The 76ers could actually try anything right now to keep them from extending a
franchise-record 21-game losing streak and will resume action Wednesday versus
the Chicago Bulls at Wells Fargo Center.
Since a buzzer-beating 95-94 victory at Boston on Jan. 29, the Sixers have
dropped 21 in a row and the trend continued with Monday's 99-90 loss at
Indiana. Thaddeus Young led the visitors with 23 points and both Wroten and
Hollis Thompson scored 17 points.
Wroten is averaging 18.3 points in 14 games as a starter.
Michael Carter-Williams finished with 15 points, a career-high tying 13
rebounds and five assists for Philadelphia, losers in nine straight on the
road. The Sixers had 19 turnovers and shot 43 percent, and are averaging a
league-high 17.4 turnovers this season (18.6 in last 9).
Philadelphia's current skid is the fifth longest in NBA history and is five
away from matching the 2010-11 Cleveland Cavaliers' record of 26.
"We look at it again (as) just another layer of learning and trying to forge
our way through this season," first-year Sixers head coach Brett Brown said.
Brown's squad has lost a team-record 16 in a row at home and 22 of the last 24
games in south Philly. The last win in front of the home crowd was versus
Charlotte on Jan. 15.
The Sixers, who have an 8-27 home mark and will host New York Friday night,
are allowing an NBA-worst 110.7 points this season and face a Bulls team that
is second in the league on defense, allowing 92.3 ppg. Chicago's offense,
though, is last in the NBA with an average of 93.3 ppg.
Chicago is back on the road for two straight games against Philadelphia and
Indiana, and hopes to improve its playoff positioning Wednesday.
The Bulls are fourth in the Eastern Conference -- just a half-game behind
Toronto -- and split a recent six-game homestand, which culminated with
Monday's 97-85 loss to Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder. Durant, the
NBA's leading scorer, posted 35 points and 12 rebounds.
"Durant is tough to guard," Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau said. "You have to
guard him with your team."
Taj Gibson's 16 points off the bench led the Bulls, while Jimmy Butler
followed with 13 points and Carlos Boozer added 12 and 11 rebounds. Joakim
Noah had nine points and grabbed 12 boards in the loss.
Chicago shot just 34.5 percent, but kept its turnovers to just six and owns a
25-12 record since the calendar turned. Still, the Bulls failed to make it
three straight victories.
The Bulls, who have a big game in Indiana Friday night, aim to improve their
16-17 road ledger against the Sixers and the two teams have split a pair of
meetings this season. Chicago took the last matchup 103-78 on Jan. 18 and has
prevailed in six of the past seven games in this series.
Chicago and Philadelphia have split the last 12 encounters in the Keystone
State, and the Sixers are 65-34 all-time as the host.
03/19 10:25:01 ET