National Basketball Association
Boston at Chicago
When: 8:00 PM ET, Thursday, October 27, 2016
Where: United Center, Chicago, Illinois

Dwyane Wade makes his debut for the hometown club when the Chicago Bulls open the season on Thursday against the visiting Boston Celtics. Wade spent his first 13 NBA seasons with the Miami Heat before joining the Bulls as a free agent this summer and he looks to help Chicago return to the playoffs after the franchise missed out last season.

The Bulls' offseason housecleaning saw the departures of Derrick Rose, Pau Gasol and Joakim Noah and the arrivals of point guard Rajon Rondo and center Robin Lopez in addition to Wade, who received a two-year, $47 million deal to return home to Chicago. The moves didn't create much excitement on a national scale and holdover All-Star shooting guard Jimmy Butler is just fine with prognosticators taking a dim outlook. "I think everybody overlooks us, anyway. All we can do is overachieve," Butler told reporters. "I know the group of guys we've got. I know how we've been working and preparing. So I know how I think it's going to go. I don't pay attention to (the critics)." The Celtics recorded a 122-117 victory over the Brooklyn Nets in Wednesday's season opener as All-Star point Isaiah Thomas contributed 25 points and nine assists.

TV: 8 p.m. ET, TNT

ABOUT THE CELTICS (1-0): Veteran center Al Horford was signed to a four-year, $113 million contract in the offseason to perhaps be the difference maker and allow the Celtics to make a run at Cleveland's Eastern Conference throne. The former Atlanta Hawks standout had just 11 points and five rebounds in 27 minutes in his Boston debut but did contribute six assists and four blocked shots in a game the Celtics led by 23 before the Nets made things interesting. "That's the NBA for you," Horford told reporters afterward. "I think it will humble you sometimes. We had a comfortable lead and we thought it was fine, but this is a good learning experience for our group."

ABOUT THE BULLS (2015-16: 42-40): Wade, Butler and Rondo will be joined in the starting lineup by frontcourt players Lopez and Taj Gibson - with Gibson prevailing in a close battle over Nikola Mirotic. Wade averaged 19.0 points last season - tied for second lowest in his standout career - and said he expects there will be some early season bumps as he, Butler and Rondo learn to play with one another. "Everything is different," Wade told reporters, saying he doesn't know if the transition will be smooth. "I can't say it will or it won't be. With every team when you add a new piece, when you add new players, it's going to be a moment where you have to adjust to each other."


1. Boston won two of last season's three meetings.

2. The Celtics will again play without PF/C Kelly Olynyk (shoulder) and PG Marcus Smart (ankle).

3. Chicago rookie SG Denzel Valentine (ankle) is expected to be available despite missing most of the preseason.

PREDICTION: Bulls 105, Celtics 101
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div Conf
Boston 1-0 W1 1-0 0-0 0-0 1-0 1-0 1-0
Chicago 0-0 L2 0-0 0-0 0-0 0-0 0-0 0-0
Last Meeting
Boston Chicago
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
1/22/16 CHI 101 BOS 110 110 46 44.8 101 50 42.7
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Boston I. Thomas 22 46.7 5
Chicago J. Butler 28 50.0 8
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Boston J. Sullinger 12 2 10
Chicago J. Butler 14 4 10
Assists Player  
Boston J. Sullinger 5
Chicago J. Butler 3
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Boston I. Thomas 87 48.1 26
Chicago N/A
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Boston A. Johnson 36 13 23
Chicago N/A
Assists Player  
Boston M. Smart 20
Chicago N/A
Quickchart Matchup
Boston Boston Off vs  Chicago Chicago Defense
Boston Off vs Chicago - Points For 122.0 Points For
Boston Off vs Chicago - Points Against 0.0 Points Against
Boston - FG% 53.9 FG%
Chicago - FG% 0.0 FG%
Boston - Reb 47.0 Reb
Chicago - Reb 0.0 Reb
Chicago Chicago Off vs  Boston Boston Defense
Chicago Off vs Boston - Points For 0.0 Points For
Chicago Off vs Boston - Points Against 117.0 Points Against
Chicago - FG% 0.0 FG%
Boston - FG% 44.3 FG%
Chicago - Reb 0.0 Reb
Boston - Reb 44.0 Reb