NBA Basketball

Final 1 2 3 4 Tot
Chicago 31 17 28 28 104
Cleveland 18 24 25 21 88
10:00 AM PT11:00 AM MT12:00 PM CT1:00 PM ET18:00 GMT2:00 11:00 AM MST1:00 PM EST22:00 UAE19:0013:00 ET12:00 PM CTNaN:� , January 21, 2019
Quicken Loans Arena, Cleveland, Ohio  Attendance: 19,432

Bulls, Cavaliers face off looking to end skids

According to STATS
According to STATS

Chicago Bulls at Cleveland Cavaliers

  1. The Cavaliers and the Bulls enter today's matchup with the two worst records in the NBA. The last season in which both Cleveland and Chicago finished with bottom-three records in the same season was 1983-84, the season before the Bulls drafted Michael Jordan.
  2. The Bulls have lost 10 games in a row, tied for the second-longest losing streak by any team this season (also Atlanta & Phoenix). The only team with a longer losing streak this season was the Cavaliers, who lost 12 straight from December 19 -- January 11.
  3. The Bulls defeated the Cavaliers in Cleveland, 112-92, when these teams last met on December 23. Cleveland has an NBA-high seven home losses by at least 20 points this season-- the Cavs only had six 20-point losses at home over the past four seasons combined.
  4. When facing teams with a losing record this season, Zach LaVine has averaged 25.9 points with 48.1/37.2/83.6 percent shooting splits. LaVine, however, has averaged just 12.2 points with 37.3/16.7/88.9 percent shooting splits in five career games against the Cavaliers.
  5. Cedi Osman is averaging 13.1 points and shooting 47.6 percent from the field over his last 18 games. Osman averaged 10.9 points on 35.9 percent shooting over his first 27 games this season.
  6. Lauri Markkanen reached 200 career three-pointers in the 91st game of his career, the fourth-fewest games needed by any player all-time to reach that mark. Only Donovan Mitchell (84), Damian Lillard (86) and Robert Covington (90) did so in fewer games than Markkanen.

Chicago and Cleveland, the two teams with the worst records, collide on Monday.

The Bulls (10-36) hit the road to face the Cavaliers (9-38), and combined the two teams have managed to win just one time in their past 20 games. Cleveland owns that victory, a surprising 101-95 upset of the LeBron James-less Lakers in Los Angeles on Jan. 13.

Cleveland is coming off a 22-point road loss to Denver on Saturday. Chicago also lost on Saturday, suffering a 14-point home defeat at the hands of the Miami Heat.

The two teams are very similar -- in a very bad way. They rank 28th and 29th in scoring per game, 26th and 27th in rebounds per game and they are tied for fewest amount of made 3-pointers per game.

On the defensive side, the Bulls and Cavs are among the bottom four in opponents' field-goal percentage. But give Chicago some credit, they rank ahead of Golden State and only give up 111.6 points per game. The Cavs come into Monday's game allowing 113.9 per game.

The two teams have met twice this season with the Bulls coming away with a one-point win on Nov. 10 and a 20-point win on Dec. 23. But since then, the Bulls have lost 11 of 12, including 10 in a row.

"You could say it's multiple things if you want," Kris Dunn tried to explain after Saturday's loss to the Heat. "At the end of the day, we just have to come together, buckle down and find a win somewhere."

The mounting losses have left some Bulls dumbfounded.

"Something's obviously wrong," said the team's leading scorer, Zach LaVine. "We weren't losing (by) double digits earlier in the season. We might have been losing, (but) we didn't have a full roster (with injuries). We're a better team now and we're getting blown out. It doesn't make a lot of sense. We go out there and play hard. You can't fault effort."

Likewise, the Cavaliers have been putting in the effort with the same losing results.

Injuries have been the Cavaliers biggest bugaboo. Against Denver and Utah, Cleveland finished off a 1-5 road trip without Tristan Thompson and Larry Nance Jr. against two of the top centers -- Rudy Gobert and Nikola Jokic.

If there was a shining light for the Cavs it was center Ante Zizic, and the 22-year-old did not embarrass himself. Against Gobert, he scored 15 points and had 10 rebounds. Facing off against Jokic, Zizic recorded 23 points and six boards.

"I was happy to see Zizic push through a back-to-back," Cleveland head coach Larry Drew said. "I think this is really his first one he's played substantial minutes and played against one of the best centers in the league in Jokic. He's got to keep working and he's got to just continue to get better, but I do see a lot of signs of improvement."

The road trip for the Cavs was costly. Nance suffered a sprained right MCL and remains out.

Thompson sat out the final two games of the road trip with a sore foot, the same foot that caused him to miss 10 games earlier this season. He is a game-time decision as is David Nwaba (ankle).

Chicago also suffered a significant loss when Wendell Carter Jr. tore ligaments in his left thumb against the Lakers on Tuesday. The rookie has opted for surgery and probably will miss the rest of the season.

--Field Level Media

Updated January 20, 2019

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