The Miami Heat could have overtaken the struggling Indiana Pacers already for top of the Eastern Conference standings if not for a recent slump.
LeBron James and company are just one and a half games back the Pacers and they want to shorten the gap when they visit their rivals Chicago Bulls in an early afternoon match-up on Sunday.
The Heat want to avoid matching a three game losing streak-- their worst skid this season when they lost to New York, Washington and Brooklyn last January-- after losing to a couple of Texas teams on the road last Tuesday and Thursday.
The Houston Rockets eked out 106-103 victory over Miami and then the San Antonio Spurs treated them to a blowout, 111-87. LeBron James, with mask and sleeves, struggled in both games and were limited to 22 and 19 points, respectively.
The Bulls have won five of their last seven games although they settled for a 2-2 split in their last four outings.
Miami leads the regular season series, 2-1 between these rivals. The Heat won 93-79 on February 23 and 107-95 on October 29, 2013 while the Bulls took the December 5 match-up to the tune of 107-87. In all games, the home team took the game and covered the spread.
Can Miami snap their streak? Or will Chicago pull off the upset? Watch the Heat-Bulls match-up via NBA League Pass.
Betting Lines: Miami Heat (-4.5) vs. Chicago Bulls (O/U: 187.0) Game time: 4:00 am AEDT
Miami Heat Trends - The Heat are 6-2-2 ATS in their last 10 games - The Heat are 3-0-1 ATS in their last 4 games vs. East teams - The Heat are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games after an ATS loss - The Heat are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games vs. Central division teams
Chicago Bulls Trends - The Bulls are 10-3 ATS in their last 13 games - The Bulls are 4-0 ATS in their last 4 games after an ATS loss - The Bulls are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games at home - The Bulls are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games vs. Southeast division teams