Chicago Bulls vs. Boston Celtics
Tip-off: Wednesday, February 13, 2013 – 7:30 PM ET
TD Garden, Boston, MA
The Boston Celtics were doing a great job even without Rajon Rondo — their last game notwithstanding — but now YouWager has learned that the team will have to do without another member of their backcourt.
The Chicago Bulls aren’t having an easy time staying healthy either.
After losing a third player to a season-ending injury in less than a month, Boston will try to recover from their first loss in more than two weeks this evening versus a Chicago team that’s looking for their eighth win in the last 10 games in the series.
The Celtics (27-24) had won seven in a row — their longest streak in two seasons — after losing Rondo to a torn right ACL on Jan. 27. That run ended earlier this week with a 94-91 road defeat versus the Charlotte Bobcats – the team that currently owns the NBA’s worst record.
Furthermore, Boston lost Leandro Barbosa to a torn left ACL. The Celtics announced Tuesday the backup guard, who has seen increased playing time since Rondo’s injury, will not be suiting up anymore for this season.
In the first days of February, the Celtics lost first-round draft pick and reserve forward Jared Sullinger for the rest of 2012-13 because of lumbar disk surgery.
Chicago is coming off Monday’s 103-89 defeat to visiting San Antonio Spurs, and according to the NBA live lines things got worse when they gave up 29 points off 19 turnovers. The miscues were their most since they had 21 in a 100-99 overtime victory versus the Celtics in Boston on Jan. 18, the most recent matchup between the teams.
Another absence from Kirk Hinrich, who won’t make it to Boston, could make it hard for the Bulls to add to its 7-2 mark in its last nine games versus the Celtics. Chicago earned their latest victory in the series when Belinelli made an off-balance fadeaway jumper with 3.1 seconds left.
Richard Hamilton had a team-best 20 points in that one and Carlos Boozer totaled 19 points and a season-high 20 rebounds, the fourth double-double in his last five games against the Celtics.
While Chicago could be short-handed again, without Rondo might hurt even more for Boston as he was averaging 25.3 points in this season’s three matchups, nearly twice as many as any other teammate.
Boston and Chicago have split their last six games at the TD Garden, but the Celtics have won a season-best six straight there since a defeat versus the New York Knicks on Jan. 24.