Can Phoenix Take Advantage Of Tired Rockets?

Charles Stark

Wednesday, December 21, 2016 1:19 PM UTC

Wednesday, Dec. 21, 2016 1:19 PM UTC

After a tough battle with San Antonio the Houston Rockets now travel to Phoenix to take on the Suns. Will playing the second game on a back to back affect the Rockets or will this be a good spot to fade them?

Houston Rockets

Houston has been red-hot overall these past few weeks and they are averaging 113.1 points per game which rank second in the NBA. Head coach Mike D’Antoni and his high-efficiency offense have really done a work in Houston putting all the right pieces in place like James Harden at the point. Offensively they rank second in the NBA in both shooting efficiency and effective field-goal percentage. On the other side of the ball, they have been less than stellar and rank just outside of the middle of the league in most defensive categories highlighted by ranking 18th and 19th in opponent shooting efficiency and effective field-goal percentage respectively. Although they give up-tempo and points at a pretty high clip allowing 105.8 points per game because they have been able to score at such a high rate it is not been a problem. They are clicking on all cylinders right now and I’ve been really impressed with how they share the ball averaging 25.5 assists per game which ranks him second in the league. All things considered, looking at just the statistics this line looks a little bit low which makes me think that the odds makers are on top of something.

Phoenix Suns

Phoenix has lost three games in a row but they are averaging 106.4 points per game which rank ninth in the NBA. They are similar to Houston in that they like to go up-tempo and get up plenty of attempts averaging 88.9 per contest which ranks second in the NBA and making 39.1 of the shots which ranks them 11th. The similarities end there though as Phoenix is not a good shooting team percentages and rank 24th and 26th in the NBA in shooting efficiency and effective field-goal percentage respectively. As well, the Suns are only shooting 44% from the floor which ranks them 22nd. Defensively though they allow just 49.2% on opponent two point shots which rank them 12th in the NBA. However, outside of that statistic, they rank in the bottom three in just about every important defensive category. Still, they do catch Houston in a difficult spot and I think they have a good chance because of their up-tempo to stay within the number.

NBA Odds

Oddsmakers have made Phoenix a +5.5 underdog in this spot and for my NBA pick, I will back them. Two things have me leaning on backing the Suns tonight. One, this line looks off, and two, despite Houston’s tremendous offense their lack of defense has me believing Phoenix can stay within the number.

Free NBA Pick: Phoenix +5.5Best Line Offered: at Intertops

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