Normally when the Trail Blazers and Rockets square off, bettors are treated to a matchup of All-Star guards in Portland’s Damian Lillard and Houston’s James Harden. Alas, Harden for sure won’t play Wednesday and Lillard probably won’t. So what can we expect from the NBA lines? Here’s a preview for Wednesday night’s game.
How to Bet Portland at Houston NBA Lines & Game Info
— Trail Blazers (@trailblazers) January 10, 2018
When: Wednesday, 8 PM ET
Where: Toyota Center, Houston
TV: NBA League Pass, CSNN
Stream: NBA League Pass
Radio: 620 AM (Portland) / Sportstalk 790 AM (Houston)
Opening NBA Lines: Rockets -9
Latest NBA Lines Trends
- Portland is 11-4-1 ATS in its last 16 games
- Portland is 4-1 SU in its last 5 games
- The total has gone OVER in 4 of Portland’s last 5 games
- Houston is 2-8 ATS in its last 10 games
- Houston is 17-7 SU in its last 24 games
- The total has gone OVER in 5 of Houston’s last 5 games at home
Why Bet on Portland?
The Blazers are in the second of a back-to-back as they started a four-game road trip in Oklahoma City on Tuesday without Lillard. He’s dealing with a calf injury, his second straight missed.
Lillard is one of four NBA players who have made at least six three pointers while recording six assists in at least two games this season. Lillard has scored 30-plus points in three of his last six games against Houston. In those games, Lillard averaged 27.5 points, 4.5 rebounds and 7.2 assists. CJ McCollum has scored 20-plus points in four of his last five games against Houston. Shabazz Napier will start as long as Lillard is out. Napier is averaging 18.2 points as a starter this year.
Entering Tuesday, the Blazers had scored 110 points or more in each of their last four games, the longest such streak this season. In those games, Portland is averaging 113.8 points while shooting 48.6% from the field and 40.7% from beyond the 3-PT line.
As a team, the Trail Blazers are averaging 24.7 assists per game since January 1 — the tenth best clip in the league. Prior to that, Portland averaged an NBA-worst 18.1 assists per game. The improved passing has provided a needed spark for the Blazer offense.
The Trail Blazers rank near the top of the NBA in a number of statistical categories. Portland is eighth in free throw percentage (79.2%), eighth in rebounding average (44.8 rpg), fifth in blocks per game (5.3) and is allowing the sixth-fewest points against (101.8 ppg).
Portland is looking for a stretch four and could be interested in Chicago’s Nikola Mirotic, who can officially be traded on Monday. At 26 could be a compelling addition to the Blazers current roster. He is on the same timeline as Damian (27) and McCollum (26) and would provide instant offense at a position the Blazers have had trouble filling with a consistent starter. Mirotic is averaging 17 points and seven rebounds a game while shooting 48.6 percent from the field and 46.5 percent from behind the three-point line in just 17 games this season.
Why Bet on Houston?
Wednesday’s game marks the second of four regular season matchups between the Trail Blazers and the Rockets. The Blazers led 98-84 at the end of the third quarter, but fell to the Rockets 124-117 on Dec. 9 in Portland. Lillard led the Trail Blazers with 35 points, four rebounds and six assists while Harden scored 48 points to go with eight rebounds and three assists to pace Houston.
The Rockets have won four of the past five meetings after losing four of the previous five. Houston has splits its past four home games vs. Portland after winning four in a row prior. Both teams have scored 100+ points in eight of the past nine games, including six straight. Over the past four meetings, Rockets are averaging 121.8 ppg on 50.1% shooting while the Blazers are averaging 114.3 ppg on 49.7% shooting.
Harden is out with a Grade 2 hamstring strain and likely at least two weeks away. He’s leading the NBA in scoring at 32.3 ppg. Forward Luc Mbah a Moute (dislocated shoulder) hasn’t been cleared for practices and he remains without a return timetable.
“I can’t really guess [about a return date],” he said. “I’m regaining strength. The shoulder is healed. Range of motion is getting better. I’m starting to do stuff on the court, getting into basketball shape.”
In Monday’s 116-107 win at Chicago, the Rockets finished 20-for-54 from beyond the arc, making 10 or more 3-pointers for the 35th consecutive game to extend their NBA record. The Rockets had 10 first-half 3-pointers, their 13th game this season with 10 treys before halftime. There are three teams with fewer than 13 games with 10 3-pointers in an entire game this season: the Minnesota Timberwolves (11), Milwaukee Bucks (10) and New York Knicks (8).
The Rockets are 28-11 this season, the fourth-best start in franchise history through the first 39 games of a season (30-9 in 1993-94, 1996-97, and 2016-17). Houston is undefeated (15-0) when Clint Capela, Harden, and Chris Paul play together and 13-11 when they don’t. The Rockets are 22-2 when leading after three quarters of play this season and 6-9 when tied or trailing.
Expert Prediction & NBA Betting Pick
Blazers will be gassed and surely without Lillard. Should be a double-digit win for Houston and very high-scoring. So be sure to pick out these NBA lines before game time.