Read a preview and watch a live stream of the Knicks vs the Bulls.
Where: United Center, Chicago.
When: Sunday March 2, 18:00 GMT
The New York Knicks face the Chicago Bulls on Sunday, and with their playoff aspirations slipping away they will be desperate to secure a win over their Eastern Conference rivals.
The hosts are enjoying their best stretch of the season and will go for their ninth win in 10 games while they have also won 21 of their last 24 home meetings against the Knicks.
Taj Gibson has emerged as potent threat off the bench at both ends, while coach Tom Thibodeau has seen the entire roster step up in recent weeks leading to a 32-26 record with the only blip being last Sunday’s defeat to Miami.
“We’re used to this,” Gibson said on Friday. “We get knocked down and we keep coming back.”
The Bulls star is averaging 18.4 points and 8.7 rebounds over his last 10 games, and the team as a whole have improved their average points total and shooting percentage during this streak to add to their defensive solidity.
Although the Bulls rank near the bottom of the NBA with 93.1 points per game and a 42.8 field-goal percentage, they’ve averaged 103.3 points on 45.5 percent shooting during their win streak.
In contrast, frustration is growing in New York and Carmelo Anthony insists that they “shouldn’t be in this position” after falling six games adrift of the eighth and final playoff spot in the East.
Anthony, second in the NBA at 28.2 points per game, is averaging 36.2 points in his last six contests, but that isn’t going to be enough if the Knicks have any chance of making the post-season.
Although the Knicks have caused Chicago problems already this season, the fact that they will be without Iman Shumpert, Andrea Bargnani and Kenyon Martin only makes the problems worse for coach Mike Woodson although Amar’e Stoudemire is expected to feature
However, Chicago have limited opponents to 88.7 points per game on 41.4 percent shooting during their 8-1 stretch, while they have also won the last five straight meetings at the United Center.