NBA odds: Clippers vs. Rockets prediction, odds, pick, and more
The Houston Rockets will host the Los Angeles Clippers in their home arena, The Toyota Center, in what is expected to be a lopsided battle between two NBA franchises heading in the opposite direction.
In the latest meeting between these two Western Conference rivals on April 9th, the LA Clippers earned an easy 126-109 victory.
Since then, things have only gotten worse for the Rockets as they have gone 2-8 in their last 10 games and have the worst record in the NBA at 15-44. Meanwhile, the Clippers are making a surge to try and claim a home-court advantage in the Western Conference. They have a 42-19 record and are just three games out of first place.
Here’s how sportsbooks have set the opening 76ers-Blazers odds.
NBA Odds: Clippers-Rockets Odds
LA Clippers -10 (-105)
Houston Rockets +10 (-115)
Over 222.5 Points (-110)
Under 222.5 Points (-110)
Why the Rockets could cover the Spread
The Houston Rockets do not only have the worst record in the league, but they have the worst record against the spread (ATS) at 19-40. They are even worse when they are in their homecourt with a 6-23 record ATS.
If the Rockets are to improve their ATS record against the Clippers, it will come down to the basics – defense. Over the last two weeks, Stephen Silas and his men have had one of the worst defensive ratings in the league, allowing 123.1 points per 100 possessions, via cleaningtheglass.com.
However, with the Rockets, it has not been a matter of them not having the potential and talent to play proficient defense, but more so effort. Earlier in the year, the Rockets led by Christian Wood had the league’s third-best defensive rating per 100 possessions at 107.1 points.
The Rockets were once 11-10 this season.
They’re now 15-44.
— StatMuse (@statmuse) April 22, 2021
In the previous matchup against the Clippers, the Rockets were without their starting point guard, John Wall, who will be active for Friday’s game. Another positive for the Houston Rockets is that Kawhi Leonard will be sidelined tonight, meaning that the Rockets will just have to game plan for Paul George.
Expect the Rockets to have better flow offensively with John Wall and Christian Wood both on the floor, but if they cannot contain Paul George and allow him to get in a rhythm, this game will likely be a repeat of last time.
Why The Clippers Could Cover The Spread
The LA Clippers are one of the hottest teams in basketball. Since the All-Star break, they are 18-5 and are looking like true contenders to come out of the Western Conference if they can remain healthy. They have been equally good ATS during that same time span with an impressive 16-7 record.
The Clippers have been able to get results despite injuries or load management. According to cleaningtheglass.com, the Clippers have been the best team offensively, as of late, scoring 123.8 points per 100 possessions.
Although Kawhi Leonard is listed inactive for Friday’s game, Paul George has shown he is capable of carrying a team singlehandedly. In the last four games in which Kawhi has missed, and George was the leader of the offense, the seven-time All-Star has averaged 34.5 points and 7.5 rebounds.
Paul George has been on a mission.
Last seven games:
— 33 PTS | 11 REB | 3 AST
— 23 PTS | 7 REB | 5 AST
— 37 PTS | 9 REB | 6 AST
— 36 PTS | 7 REB | 8 AST
— 32 PTS | 3 REB | 9 AST
— 33 PTS | 7 REB | 3 AST
— 36 PTS | 3 REB | 5 AST pic.twitter.com/FzU7vByEPx
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) April 21, 2021
The key for the Clippers to cover the spread is for them to continue to be productive offensively and not become complacent against the struggling Rockets.
Final Clippers-Rockets Prediction & Pick
The Clippers are statistically the best offensive team in the league at the moment, while the Rockets are statistically the worst defensive team. Even without Leonard, the Clippers will be able to find open looks on offense and slow down the transition speed of John Wall.
For those reasons, the Clippers should cover the spread and move into second place in the Western Conference.
FINAL SCORE PREDICTION & PICK FOR CLIPPERS-ROCKETS: HOU 104, LAC 119 (LAC -10)
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