Bucks vs. Bulls NBA expert prediction and odds for Friday, March 1 (Count on Chicago as a home underdog)

NBA betting preview, prediction and best bet for Bucks-Bulls. 
Feb 25, 2024; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Chicago Bulls forward DeMar DeRozan (11) brings the ball up the floor against the Pelicans.
Feb 25, 2024; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Chicago Bulls forward DeMar DeRozan (11) brings the ball up the floor against the Pelicans. / Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

The Milwaukee Bucks are starting to figure it out with Doc Rivers on the bench. Milwaukee has opened up the second half with four consecutive victories after blasting the Charlotte Hornets twice in the last three days. Now finishing a back-to-back, Milwaukee visits the United Center Friday night to face the Bulls.

Chicago, winners of two of its last three games, are firmly in the NBA Play-In Tournament conversation, sitting at No. 9 in the Eastern Conference. Chicago pulled out a double-overtime win over the Cavaliers Wednesday and will look to grab some momentum in a nationally-televised home tilt. 

Here’s the betting preview for Friday’s conference clash with a best bet. 

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Bucks vs. Bulls odds, spread and total

Bucks vs. Bulls how to watch

  • Date: Friday, March 1 
  • Game time: 10 p.m. EST
  • Venue: United Center
  • How to watch (TV): ESPN
  • Bucks  record: 39-21
  • Bulls record: 28-31

Bucks vs. Bulls injury report

Milwaukee Bucks

  • Khris Middleton (ankle): doubtful

Chicago Bulls

  • Alex Caruso (hamstring): questionable

Bucks vs. Bulls key players to watch


Bobby Portis: The 6-foot-10 forward has helped Milwaukee’s defense turn in three solid efforts out of the All-Star break with 23 rebounds in that stretch. Portis has also scored in double figures in nine consecutive games and turned in a 14-point, 10-rebound double-double in Thursday’s win over Charlotte. 


DeMar DeRozan: The veteran forward may have shot just 8-of-26 from the field against Cleveland Wednesday, but DeRozan got to the free-throw line 19 times and finished with 35 points and 10 rebounds. DeRozan is averaging 27.1 points per game in February. 

Bucks vs. Bulls prediction and pick

Milwaukee’s biggest improvement in its three-game winning streak since the All-Star break has been on the defensive end. The Bucks have held all three opponents to under 100 points, giving up 94 on average. 

Those performances came against the Hornets and the Joel Embiid-less 76ers, and Chicago isn’t too high of a step up in class. The Bulls rank No. 25 in the NBA in scoring and are No. 26 in effective field goal percentage.

Milwaukee’s defense is No. 2 in defensive rebounding this season and should get plenty of opportunities to clean the glass against a Bulls’ offense that struggles shooting.

Chicago has the defense that can set the tone in this matchup, though. The Bulls are tough on opponents down low, leading the NBA in points in the paint allowed (44.4 per game) and No. 8 in second-chance points. 

Chicago has played Milwaukee close this season, splitting a pair of overtime contests in the previous two matchups. The Bulls are also 8-4-1 ATS as a home underdog this year while Milwaukee is just 12-17 ATS on the road.

Furthermore, Chicago is 9-5 ATS with a rest advantage this season and should hang with the Bucks once again Friday night. 

Game odds update periodically and are subject to change.