The Chicago Bulls play the second game on this slow, sprawling road trip. In fact, the Bulls don't play another back to back prior to the all-star break taking the sting out of what would have been a much tougher road trip otherwise.
The Bulls are rolling on a six game winning streak while the Warriors have won their last two games against the Jazz and Bucks. While the Warriors aren't a great team, they're a very good home team and have won 15 of 25 in their building. They have the power to throw down a lot of points fast, and the Bulls won't win if they don't play well and with focus.
The first time the teams met early on in the season, the Warriors were off to a great start, but they were missing David Lee. Things didn't go well for them that night as the Bulls annihilated them, and the Warriors season has gone down the tubes since then as well.
Keys to the game
Defend the three point line
One of the ways for a bad team to defeat a good team is to have really hot night from beyond the arc. As a team, the Warriors shoot 40% from beyond the arc which is incredible. They have a ton of shooters that can fill it up and get hot, so the Bulls need to play a little looser on the interior to stay out on the shooters. Stephen Curry, Reggie Williams, Radmanovic, Monta Ellis, and Dorrell Wright can all drain threes on you when left open.
Slow down the game
The Warriors run one of the fastest paces in the league. Their half court execution isn't all that great, and they get a lot of points through early offense and the fast break. Get back on defense to deny the early offense looks which result in a lot of open threes, and the Bulls job defensively will be much easier.
Be prepared to run Taj Gibson more minutes rather than Kurt Thomas in order to keep up with the Warriors when they run to slow down the early offense.
The Warriors don't have a whole lot of defense, and their team / help defense is particularly bad. Boozer should crush David Lee with his offense, and Warriors aren't good enough to have a shot in hell of slowing down Derrick Rose. Look for the Bulls to move the ball well and find the open man.
Role players need to knock down shots
With the Warriors playing rather porous defense, there will be huge opportunities for Korver, Deng, Brewer, and Bogans to knock down open shots. They need to step up to the plate and execute.
I think the Bulls will win this one, but the Warriors are a different team at home than on the road, and they'll have David Lee in the lineup this time compared to last time. Also, we saw against Philly that when we absolutely destroyed a team that it's not necessarily easy to pull off the same feat on the road the next time around.