NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Monday, January 17th (All times eastern)
Chicago Bulls (27-13) at Memphis Grizzlies (19-21), 1 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Chicago Bulls and Memphis Grizzlies will honor Martin Luther King, Jr. Day with a matinee affair Monday from FedEx Forum.
Chicago has won two straight, four of five and 17 of its last 22 games, including Saturday's 99-96 triumph over the star-studded Miami Heat from the United Center. Kyle Korver hit the go-ahead three-pointer with 25.5 seconds remaining and lifted the Bulls to their eighth straight home win.
Derrick Rose led the Bulls with 34 points and eight assists, while Carlos Boozer finished with 12 points and 10 rebounds for Chicago, which held a 42-30 rebounding advantage.
"I love competing against the best. It was fun. [Wade] was making a hell of a shot, tough shots," Rose said. "It's really exciting when a game is like that because it makes you bring your best stuff."
Boozer has registered 12 double-doubles in his last 15 games, and is expected to miss Monday's game with a sprained left ankle. The Bulls are on their longest home winning streak since the 2004-05 campaign, but will try to work on their 9-10 mark away from the Windy City today. After the Bulls visit Memphis, they will return home for a six-game residency versus the Bobcats, Mavericks, Cavs, Bucks, Magic and Pacers.
Memphis has won two straight and five of seven games, including Saturday's 89-70 victory over Dallas. Zach Randolph had 23 points and 20 rebounds, while Darrell Arthur added 17 points and Rudy Gay scored 16 for the Grizzlies.
"We came out with a lot of energy in the first half," Randolph said. "We tried to get them on their heels. We got the lead and just stayed up."
The Grizzlies weren't bothered by the return of Mavs forward Dirk Nowitzki, who had missed nine straight games with a knee ailment. Nowitzki started Saturday's game, but was ejected in the third quarter after being called for a foul against Randolph. Nowitzki was then hit with a pair of technical fouls and ended the night with seven points and five rebounds in 15 minutes.
Memphis is aiming for its fifth straight win at home and owns a 12-6 mark in the Volunteer State this season. The Grizzlies are 4-4 all-time in the MLK Game and lead the NBA in points in the paint for a second consecutive season, averaging 48.5 points inside. They're also first in forced turnovers (17.5) and steals (9.70) and rank second in points off turnovers (19.1).
Chicago and Memphis are squaring off for the first time since the Grizz swept a home-and-home series a year ago. Memphis has won three straight over the Bulls, losers of five in a row at FedEx Forum.
01/17 10:41:00 ET