Houston Rockets (46-27) @ New Orleans Pelicans (31-43)
NBA Basketball: Sunday, March 24, 2019, 7:00PM ET (Smoothie King Center)
Lines and Odds: Houston Rockets (-10), Over/Under: 228
Free NBA Picks Houston Rockets vs New Orleans Pelicans
In this Western conference matchup, the New Orleans Pelicans will host the surging Houston Rockets Sunday night. The Pelicans are coming off a forgettable 119-96 loss to the Orlando Magic on the road, while winning just one of their last five. On the other hand, the Rockets are firing high, winning thirteen of their last fifteen, their last victory being against San Antonio 111-105 at home. They will look to keep it going on the road Sunday.
The New Orleans Pelicans currently sit twelfth in the Western Conference, a single game behind the Los Angeles Lakers and 1.5 games ahead of the Memphis Grizzlies eliminated from playoff contention, which says a lot about the lackluster season the Pelicans have endured so far. In their most recent display, the Orlando Magic took apart the 28th ranked defense 119-96, on a night where All-Star Anthony Davis wasn’t present. E’Twaun Moore and Jrue Holiday were also absent from Wednesday’s contest, and are expected to miss Sunday’s matchup as well. Stanley Johnson led the scoring that night with 18 points on 6/13 shooting, while Cheick Diallo had 11 rebounds and Ian Clark led with 4 assists all from the bench. Anthony Davis (personal) should be active for the matchup versus Houston, which should mesh things up in the paint, but without Jrue Holiday to start, there is no answer for James Harden and Chris Paul, so expect the starting backcourt, Elfrid Payton and Frank Jackson, to be extremely busy Sunday night. Anthony Davis currently leads New Orleans this season with 26.2 PPG on 51.8 FG% and 12.0 RPG, which comes as a surprise since he’s being limited to 28 minutes or less per game.
The Houston Rockets currently sit at third place in the Western Conference, with only a game ahead of the Portland TrailBlazers and 3.5 games behind championship holders Golden State Warriors. In Friday’s impressive win versus the San Antonio Spurs, James Harden tied his career-high with 61 points on 19/34 shooting, while Chris Paul led with 5 assists and Clint Capela grabbed a game-high 16 rebounds. MVP candidate Harden has been on a tear these past couple of games, making this his eighth game this season over 50 points. Additionally, his 27 points in the first quarter were the second most in franchise history, which demonstrates how high the peak is for Houston’s 3rd ranked offense. With seeding in the playoffs at stake, they will look to keep it going against the Pelicans, who are depleted in their backcourt, which should be another scoring clinic for Harden and the Rockets. He currently leads Houston this season with 36.5 PPG on 43.8 FG% and 7.6 APG, while Clint Capela leads with 12.5 RPG. Expect for the perimeter shooting to be the primary mode of attack for Houston’s offense.
Cover the Spread 365 Betting Trends
Houston are 8-2 SU in their last 10 games
Houston are 5-4-1 ATS in their last 10 games
The total has went UNDER 8 of Houston’s last 10 games
New Orleans are 3-7 SU in their last 10 games
New Orleans are 0-5 SU in their last 5 games at home
The total has went OVER 5 of New Orleans’s last 10 games
Free NBA Scores New Orleans Pelicans vs Houston Rockets
This shouldn’t end up being a real contest for the Rockets, unless the 3-point shooting is completely off and Julius Randle with Anthony Davis torch the interior of Houston’s defense, which is too unlikely given Davis’s expected minutes restriction. Houston, despite being on the road, should come out firing early in the first, and extend the lead throughout the second half while covering the spread with ease.
Pick: Houston Rockets (-10)