Two teams moving in opposite directions heading into the 2017-18 campaign, the Toronto Raptors and Chicago Bulls open their new seasons with a matchup at Air Canada Centre on Thursday night.
Tip is scheduled for about 7:45 p.m. ET and will be broadcast locally on NBC Sports Chicago (Bulls’ market) and TSN (Raptors’ market). Depending on your location, your options for watching a live stream of the game will be different.
If You’re in the Bulls Market:
FuboTV: NBC Sports Chicago is included in the “Fubo Premier” channel package. A free 7-day trial is offered.
DirecTV Now: NBC Sports Chicago is included in the “Just Right”, “Go Big” and “Gotta Have It” channel packages. A free 7-day trial is offered.
Sling TV: NBC Sports Chicago is included in the “Sling Blue” channel package. A free 7-day trial is offered.
If You’re in the Raptors Market:
TSN: You can watch TSN via its website or via the TSN GO app. A cable subscription is required.
If You’re Outside the Bulls & Raptors Markets:
NBA League Pass: Allows you to watch all non-nationally televised, out-of-market games. It is offering a free preview (no payment information required) through October 24
Projected Bulls Starting Lineup
Projected Raptors Starting Lineup
The Raptors are favored by 13, which somehow may still be too narrow of a spread. Toronto is basically the same squad that finished third in the East last year, while Chicago said goodbye to Jimmy Butler and Dwyane Wade in the offseason, fully embracing the rebuild.
And as if the Bulls’ roster wasn’t already thin enough, Zach LaVine is still sidelined as he recovers from his knee injury, and Bobby Portis and Nikola Mirotic are both out after the former punched the latter in practice a couple of days ago.
As such, Chicago is down to Justin Holiday and Lauri Markkanen as its likely leading scorers. Holiday has looked good in the preseason, and Markkanen is an intriguing rookie, so it will be compelling to watch their development, but it’s not exactly going to be a fair fight against one of the NBA’s best backcourts and legitimate East contender.