NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Tuesday, December 10th (All times Eastern)
Milwaukee Bucks (4-16) at Chicago Bulls (8-10), 8 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Chicago Bulls hope to get forward Luol Deng back on the floor when they close out a four-game homestand Tuesday versus the Milwaukee Bucks from the United Center.
Deng missed Saturday's 92-75 loss to the Detroit Pistons because of a calf and Achilles issue and is questionable versus the Bucks. Deng has scored 20 or more points in six straight games, averaging 26.2 points in that time, and is just one of three players (Kevin Durant, Kevin Love) posting averages of 19.0 ppg, 7.0 rpg and 4.0 apg this season.
Taj Gibson got the start for Deng in the loss to Detroit and finished with 21 points and 10 rebounds. Gibson is averaging 21.4 points and 8.4 rebounds in his previous five games for the Bulls, who have lost seven of nine and dropped to 6-2 as the host this season. The Bulls were coming off a convincing 107-87 win over the Miami Heat on Thursday.
Detroit spoiled the mood by making 12-of-19 3-pointers.
"We had a hard time scoring, we had a hard time covering the (3-point) line," Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau said.
Mike Dunleavy and Carlos Boozer scored 16 and 13 points, respectively, in a losing effort.
Milwaukee's tough season will resume Tuesday and it is 2-8 away from home. In a 90-82 home loss versus the Brooklyn Nets on Saturday, O.J. Mayo paced the hosts with 22 points and John Henson added 18 for the Bucks, who are just 2-14 in the last 16 contests.
Henson has scored 10-plus points in five straight games.
Brooklyn scored 21 points off 12 Milwaukee turnovers and played without top scorers Paul Pierce and Deron Williams.
"We could not defend them one-on-one, they were just too big for us," said Bucks head coach Larry Drew. "We tried to mix it up and try some things defensively but they got the ball to shooters."
The Bucks are only 2-8 on the road this season and split four matchups with Chicago in 2012-13. The Bulls, though, are 10-2 in the past 12 encounters with Milwaukee and 12-3 over the last 15 meetings in the Second City.
12/10 10:26:05 ET