National Basketball Association
Preview
Chicago at Dallas
When: 8:30 PM ET, Saturday, December 3, 2016
Where: American Airlines Center, Dallas, Texas

The Chicago Bulls ended November with one of their worst losses of the season but opened December with perhaps their best victory. They will try to build off the latter when they visit the struggling Dallas Mavericks on Saturday.

After a 4-2 road trip and four full days off, the Bulls were surprisingly out of sorts in a home loss to the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday, but they recovered quickly and delivered a 111-105 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Friday. Jimmy Butler scored 26 points to record his 12th straight 20-point effort, tying Michael Jordan for the most such performances by a Chicago player in the last 20 years. Mavericks forward Dirk Nowitzki (Achilles) has already been ruled out of this one and is expected to also miss Monday's meeting with Charlotte. The 13-time All-Star has played in just five games for Dallas, although all five were losses.

TV: 8:30 p.m. ET, WGN (Chicago), FSN Southwest (Dallas)

ABOUT THE BULLS (11-7): Butler had plenty of support Friday night from his fellow starters, who put forth an impressive collective effort. Rajon Rondo recorded his first triple-double of the season with 15 points, 12 assists and 11 rebounds, while Taj Gibson finished with a season-high 23 points and 11 boards for his team-leading seventh double-double. Dwyane Wade chipped in 24 points but will not travel to Dallas as coach Fred Hoiberg aims to get his veteran star some rest.

ABOUT THE MAVERICKS (3-15): While Nowitzki remains sidelined, Seth Curry is expected to miss his second straight game with a knee issue. Fellow shooting guard Justin Anderson, who has scored in double figures in four of his last five games, made the most of his opportunity off the bench with a 3-of-3 showing from beyond the arc. Point guard Deron Williams had his best game since returning from a calf issue four games ago by providing 14 points and eight assists.

BUZZER BEATERS

1. Butler has played at least 40 minutes in two straight games and in four of the last seven.

2. Mavericks F Harrison Barnes has not attempted a single foul shot in four of his last five games.

3. Bulls F Doug McDermott (concussion) could be cleared for contact soon, according to team officials.

PREDICTION: Bulls 99, Mavericks 92
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div Conf
Chicago 11-7 W1 5-2 6-5 0-0 11-7 2-1 8-4
Dallas 3-15 L2 2-5 1-10 0-0 3-15 1-5 2-9
Last Meeting
Chicago Dallas
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
1/15/16 DAL 83 CHI 77 77 47 36.0 83 43 39.0
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Chicago D. Rose 18 44.4 2
Dallas D. Nowitzki 21 40.0 7
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Chicago T. Gibson 11 4 7
Dallas Z. Pachulia 10 2 8
Assists Player  
Chicago J. Butler 6
Dallas D. Williams 6
Season
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Chicago J. Butler 526 45.2 189
Dallas H. Barnes 414 42.9 67
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Chicago T. Gibson 193 62 131
Dallas A. Bogut 186 51 135
Assists Player  
Chicago R. Rondo 155
Dallas D. Williams 65
Quickchart Matchup
Chicago Chicago Off vs  Dallas Dallas Defense
Chicago Off vs Dallas - Points For 104.8 Points For
Chicago Off vs Dallas - Points Against 99.8 Points Against
Chicago - FG% 44.0 FG%
Dallas - FG% 45.9 FG%
Chicago - Reb 48.9 Reb
Dallas - Reb 44.6 Reb
Dallas Dallas Off vs  Chicago Chicago Defense
Dallas Off vs Chicago - Points For 91.0 Points For
Dallas Off vs Chicago - Points Against 99.2 Points Against
Dallas - FG% 40.9 FG%
Chicago - FG% 44.3 FG%
Dallas - Reb 40.6 Reb
Chicago - Reb 43.4 Reb