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“I think it’s going to be a zoo in here on Thursday,” Noah said. “It’s very exciting.” I agree with Joakim, it is very exciting. Expect a playoff atmosphere at the UC tonight between the two best teams in the Eastern Conference. The Bulls always seem to bring it against the league’s best teams and the Celtics still believe they can run down the Bulls for the #1 seed in the East. I’m expecting a very tough, low scoring basketball game tonight.

This is the Bulls first look at the new look Celtics. They have dropped two of the first three against Boston and could really use this game to even up the season series. The OT game they dropped at Boston early in the season still stings a little bit. This will be Joakim Noah’s second game back after spraining the ankle. He looked a little off against the Suns, grabbing only four rebounds. The Bulls will certainly need a better effort out of him tonight defensively and on the glass if they hope to win.

Stat of the Day:

These two teams rank #1 and #2 in the NBA in both defense rating and opponents PPG.

Probable Boston Starters:

G – Rajon Rondo, 10.6 PPG

G – Ray Allen, 16.7 PPG

F – Paul Pierce, 18.8 PPG

F- Kevin Garnett, 14.9 PPG

C – Jermaine O’Neal, 5.2 PPG

Probable Chicago Starters:

G – Derrick Rose, 25.1 PPG

G – Keith Bogans, 4.3 PPG

F – Luol Deng, 17.5 PPG

F – Carlos Boozer, 17.8 PPG

C – Joakim Noah, 12.1 PPG

Prediction:

Current Line: Chicago -4.5, Over/Under 179

It’s important to remember that this game means a little bit more to Boston than it does to Chicago. It’s a game that the Celtics need. It’s a game that the Bulls want. Don’t tell that to the Bulls players though. Expect both teams to bring their best game. I worry a little bit about Joakim Noah though. He’s a key against Boston and he did look off against Phoenix. This game is going to be closely contested and a low scoring. Take the points.

Celtics 89 Bulls 88