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NBA Preview from The Sports Network



Thursday, March 13th (All times Eastern)

Houston Rockets (44-20) at Chicago Bulls (35-29), 7 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - It appears both the Houston Rockets and Chicago Bulls will reach the playoffs, but the two squads are coming off losing efforts.

Something has to give when the Rockets pay a visit to the Bulls Thursday night at the United Center. The Rockets opened a tough three-game road trip with Tuesday's 106-98 loss at Oklahoma City, as James Harden netted 28 points and Chandler Parsons added 19.

Dwight Howard was limited to nine points and grabbed 10 rebounds for Houston, which had a five-game winning streak stopped and fell to 18-13 on the road. The Rockets missed several opportunities to keep their winning streak intact.

"We missed 15 layups out there," said Houston head coach Kevin McHale. "We went in there soft tonight. We didn't attack the rim."

The Rockets are fourth in the Western Conference standings, one game behind the Los Angeles Clippers and four off the top seed.

Houston will close the trip Sunday afternoon in Miami.

Meanwhile, the Bulls will continue their quest for a playoff spot and a six- game homestand versus the Rockets.

Chicago has alternated results in the last six games and dropped to 1-2 on the stay with Tuesday's 104-96 loss to San Antonio. Chicago was down 38-14 after the first quarter and a second-half surge fell short.

"There's nothing to take (from a game) when you get down by 30 and then make a run at the end. We've got to get it figured out," Bulls head coach Tom Thibodeau said.

D.J. Augustin and Jimmy Butler scored 24 and 23 points, respectively, while Joakim Noah rounded out the double-digit scorers with 13 points to go along with eight rebounds, seven assists and two blocks. The Bulls shot 42.7 percent and committed 14 turnovers.

The Bulls have a 19-12 record as the host and are fourth in the East standings, 1 1/2 games behind the Toronto Raptors. They still have Sacramento and Oklahoma City slated to visit the United Center.

Chicago suffered a 109-94 loss at Houston on Dec. 18 and was led by Butler's 20 points. Howard had 23 points in that one and both Harden and Parsons ended with 19 for the Rockets, who have won four in a row in this series.

Houston is 7-3 in the last 10 trips to the Windy City.

03/13 11:38:57 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
3rd
CAR 1
MIN 3
 
4th
CHA 95
TOR 78
 
Final
STL 5
HOU 2
 
Final
BOS 3
MIA 5
 
Final
TAM 2
MIN 1
 
Final
PHI 1
NYY 4
 
Final
ATL 8
WAS 9
 
Final
TOR 5
BAL 4
 
Final
NYM 5
DET 4
Final
SDP 5
CWS 0
 
Final
CHC 2
CIN 5
 
Final
CLE 9
KAN 11
 
Final
MIL 1
LOS 10
 
Final
TEX 3
SFG 12
 
Final
LOS 7
SEA 4
 
Final
ANA 3
COL 0
 
Final
ARI 2
OAK 7
 
6th
NYY 0
PIT 3
 
4th
IND 85
CHI 76
 
4th
WAS 94
MIA 87
 
4th
ORL 105
SAC 100
 
4th
CHA 95
TOR 78
 
4th
PHI 63
UTA 75
 
3rd
ATL 65
CLE 63
 
Half
NOP 47
BOS 47
 
Half
HOU 54
DET 46
 
Half
MEM 43
LAL 46
 
2nd
BRK 46
PHO 50
 
2nd
SAN 32
DEN 29
 
10:30pm Tonight
GSW
DAL
Final
MVSU 75
ARKPB 94
 
Final
CSOU 60
LONG 68
 
Final
WICHS 56
SILL 45
Final
RAD 66
WINT 67
 
Final
ILLST 71
EVAN 67
Final
HIGH 71
GWEBB 72
 
Final
UNCG 81
SAMF 76
 
Final
ELON 74
TOWS 69
 
2nd
KSU 77
AKR 77
 
2nd
BUF 71
BGU 73
 
2nd
DART 75
BRO 69
 
2nd
WMICH 67
CMICH 57
 
2nd
PENN 52
CLMB 46
 
Final
PRIN 66
CORN 53
 
2nd
OU 66
ILLCH 69
 
Final
OHIO 95
UMO 65
 
2nd
BST 52
NILL 55
 
Final
EMICH 85
TOL 59
 
Final
NIOWA 71
BRAD 46
 
2nd
MURST 57
MORE 59
 
2nd
HARV 21
YALE 29
 
1st
DREX 14
COC 7
 
1st
CITA 20
FUR 29
 
1st
CCAR 13
UNCA 11
 
1st
USF 3
PAC 8
 
1st
BAY 0
TTU 0
 
9:30pm Tonight
EKENT
BEL
9:30pm Tonight
CLST
DET
9:35pm Tonight
INDST
LOYC
11:30pm Tonight
SCU
LMU
3rd
NJD 1
CLB 3
 
3rd
CAR 1
MIN 3
 
2nd Intermission
OTT 1
BUF 2
 
2nd Intermission
DET 2
CAL 3
 
1st
CHI 0
EDM 1
 
10:00pm Tonight
ANA
PIT