New York Knicks at Chicago Bulls (-8.5, 188.5)
Derrick Rose looks to shake off a subpar return as he plays at home for the first time in 17-plus months when the Chicago Bulls tangle with the New York Knicks on Thursday night. Rose was just 4-of-15 shooting for 12 points and had more turnovers (five) than assists (four) in his return from major knee surgery in Chicago’s loss to the Miami Heat. “I don’t think I forced anything,” Rose said after Tuesday’s contest. “I just couldn’t knock down any shots. I don’t think it was rust.”
New York opened its season with a victory over Milwaukee on Wednesday in a game in which the Knicks let a 25-point second-half lead slip away before fighting off the Bucks. Center Tyson Chandler elected to take the view that the close call was of benefit to his team. “We want to put teams away, especially (when) you’re going into a back-to-back so you have an opportunity to rest,” Chandler said. “But like I say, at the end of the day, learning experience, and I’d rather learn with a win than a loss.”
TV: 8 p.m. ET, TNT
LINE: Bulls opened at -7.5 and were bet up to -8.5. The total opened at 190.5 and has come down to 188.5.
NBA POWER RANKINGS: Knicks (-8.5) - Bulls (-13.3) + Home court (-3.0) = Bulls -7.8
ABOUT THE KNICKS (1-0): The status of point guard Raymond Felton is a concern after he tweaked a hamstring in the opener. New York coach Mike Woodson said Felton’s availability would be decided shortly before game time even though Felton was insisting he would be in the lineup. “Hopefully it goes away,” Felton said after scoring 18 points against the Bucks. “It’s one of those things where it can last two to three days but it can last up to six weeks.” Forward Carmelo Anthony had 19 points and 10 rebounds against Milwaukee.
ABOUT THE BULLS (0-1): Chicago was overly hyped for the challenge of facing defending champion Miami, but the way the Bulls fell behind early and were not in the game made the defeat even more disappointing. “It’s not the end of the world,” Rose said. “This will be easily forgotten. We have the whole season to make a statement. For us, it’s building every game.” The one Chicago standout was forward Carlos Boozer, who repeatedly had his way inside with 31 points on 13-of-18 shooting in addition to grabbing seven rebounds.
* Over is 6-2 in the last eight meetings.
* Knicks are 2-5 ATS in the last seven meetings in Chicago.
* Knicks are 0-5 ATS in the last five meetings.
* Underdog is 4-0 ATS in the last four meetings.
1. Chicago went 4-0 against the Knicks last season and has won the last five meetings.
2. Knicks SG J.R. Smith is serving a five-game suspension for violating the league’s drug policy.
3. Bulls C Joakim Noah (groin) was limited to 20 minutes in the opener but did grab 11 rebounds.
Golden State Warriors at Los Angeles Clippers (-6.5, 203)
The Los Angeles Clippers endured a disappointing season debut under new coach Doc Rivers, especially at the defensive end. The Clippers will look to avoid falling into an early hole in the Pacific Division when they host the Golden State Warriors on Thursday. Rivers built strong defensive teams with the Boston Celtics but watched Los Angeles struggle mightily in a season-opening loss to the Los Angeles Lakers.
The Warriors had the opposite experience against the Lakers in their opener on Wednesday, getting 38 points from Klay Thompson in a 125-94 blowout. Rivers lamented his teams’ lack of preparation. “(The Lakers) destroyed us on the glass and destroyed us in turnovers,” Rivers said. “So it was a good lesson for us.” Golden State controlled the glass in its opener despite holding its entire frontcourt to 27 minutes or fewer on Wednesday.
TV: 10:30 p.m. ET, TNT
LINE: The Clippers opened -7 and have come down to -6.5. The total opened at 203 and has jumped to 203.5.
COVERS POWER RANKINGS: Warriors (-9.0) - Clippers (-13.5) + Home Court (-3.0) = Clippers -7.5
ABOUT THE WARRIORS (1-0): Golden State finished second to the Clippers in the Pacific Division in 2012-13 and is looking to challenge for the top spot this season after bringing in Andre Iguodala to supplement the perimeter defense and display toughness on the wing. Iguodala only scored seven points on Wednesday but helped spread the defense for Thompson while providing one of the highlights of the night on a behind-the-back give-and-go exchange with David Lee. The Warriors led the NBA in 3-point percentage in 2012-13 and showed no signs of slowing down by burying 15-of-27 from beyond the arc in the opener, led by Thompson’s 5-of-7 performance.
ABOUT THE CLIPPERS (0-1): Los Angeles held a slim lead for most of its opener before being blown out in the fourth quarter by the Lakers’ reserves in a 116-103 setback. “The good thing is we have 81 more games,” Rivers said. “The bad thing is everyone is going to play us (hard).” Blake Griffin scored 19 points but struggled on the defensive end while the Clippers were outrebounded. Los Angeles is working in newcomers J.J. Redick and Jared Dudley and had the two split time with Matt Barnes and Jamal Crawford.
* Over is 5-0 in the last five meetings.
* Warriors are 6-1 ATS in the last seven meetings.
* Warriors are 4-1 ATS in the last five meetings in Los Angeles.
* Underdog is 6-1 ATS in the last seven meetings.
1. Golden State F Harrison Barnes (foot) sat out the opener and is not expected to play until the weekend.
2. Griffin shot 47.2 percent from the field against the Warriors last season - his lowest mark against any Pacific rival.
3. Golden State took three of the four meetings last season, with the lone loss coming at Los Angeles on Jan. 5, 115-89.