Free NBA Picks & Predictions for Trail Blazers vs. Rockets

Joe Catalano

Sunday, March 9, 2014 4:00 PM GMT

Can the Portland Trail Blazers give us a profitable betting opportunity when they face the Houston Rockets. Let's take a look at the basketball betting odds and find out!

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We could see a high energy offensive-powered game tonight as the 2nd and 3rd ranked offenses in the NBA square off in the Portland Trail Blazers (42-20) and Houston Rockets. (43-19) The Rockets, who are currently holding down the number 3 position in the Western Conference, are on a 4 game winning streak.

Tip-off is set for tonight at 7:00 pm ET at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas.

Houston is listed as a 5.5 point betting favorite on the NBA odds board and the total for the game is 213.5.

Portland can’t afford to fall too far behind in the standings as Houston will be a tough team to defeat at 25-7 at home. This should be an exciting game to watch from both the bettor and fans perspective with past paced action.

2013-14 NBA Championship Betting Futures

Statement Game

Houston made a huge statement on Friday as they knocked off Paul George and the Indiana Pacers, 112-86. Houston got off to a fast start at home and a 38-16 advantage in the 3 quarter secured the win for the Rockets. These are the type of games that playoff teams remember when entering the playoffs and possibly facing eachother. It showed just how far that the Rockets have come. The Rockets were 13 for 28 from 3-point range in this game.

Only Getting Better

James Harden is improving at a rapid paced since his days with the OKC Thunder and people forget that he’s only 24 years old. Harden has a bright future as one of the faces of the NBA. Aside from Russell Westbrook, Harden has a better ability to than anyone else in the NBA to penetrate through traffic and score a timely bucket.

He’s averaging 28.7 points, 7.3 assists, and 4.5 rebounds in his last 10 games; those are MVP-like numbers. With players like Dwight Howard and Chandler Parsons complimenting Harden, Houston has a great nucleus and is a very deep team with guys like Jeremy Lin on the bench.

This is the one major edge that Houston has over Portland. While Portland sports one of the best starting 5 in the game, team depth is on the Rockets side and James Harden is one of the best go to guys in this game.

He’s Back

The final outcome might not be what Portland wanted in a 103-98 loss to the Dallas Mavericks, but LaMarcus Aldridge had a huge game, leading the Blazers with 30 points and 17 rebounds. This is the first real big game that Aldridge has had since returning to action and the Blazers have to be encouraged.

Portland will need more from Aldridge as Damian Lillard has been in a mini-slump as of late. Lillard is averaging just 14.6 points per game in his last 5 games. Portland shouldn’t be too worried because there’s always someone that steps up when another player is having a bad game.

Aldridge’s return could hamper the progress of center, Robin Lopez. Lopez had been playing the best basketball of his career in Aldridge’s absence and there’s only so much of the basketball to go around. The Trail Blazers need Lopez to have a solid game in Houston as he’ll be opposed by Dwight Howard. Howard may not be the player that he once was in Orlando, but he has a way of controlling the paint on the defensive end, enabling James Harden to facilitate the action on the offensive end, which usually leads to success for Houston.

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Outcome

Momentum is key to success and although 5.5 points is a large spread, Houston is playing with a ton of momentum and at home. Lay the points and take the Rockets for your basketball picks.

NBA Pick: Houston – 5.5 at Bet 365