The final game of Wednesday’s big slate of games is the Rockets heading into Mexico City to play the Wolves. The NBA Odds have the Wolves as +7 home dogs, (no pun intended) with a total of 200. Who should you back with your NBA Picks?
The NBA is continuing its push to be more global, and that continues tonight in Mexico City with the Rockets and Wolves. It should be an interesting game on a neutral floor, and now with Kevin Love in Cleveland, the Wolves have had some trouble scoring the ball against certain teams. At 6-1, the Rockets have been playing much better defense than years past, however they have also not played many good teams outside of their two most recent games against the Spurs and Warriors.
However their defense seems to be for real, and tonight against a team that has only scored 92 and 94 points in regulation respectfully in their last two games, things don’t look too good for Minnesota in this international game.
The biggest issue will be stopping the big guns for the Rockets. The Wolves don’t have anyone capable of defending James Harden for the entire game, and even though they have some guys with resumes good enough to try, I doubt anyone will succeed. Another issue for the Wolves will be slowing down Dwight Howard. After missing a game with an illness, Howard practiced yesterday and looks like he is good to go for the Mexico City game. Even though Houston is missing a few other starters in Terrence Jones and Patrick Beverley, they have been getting solid contributions from Isaiah Canaan and Donatas Montejunas in their absence. In other words, no matter how you spin it, the Rockets look like the better play here, however I think I am once again laying off the spread, and going with a wager on the total instead.
The Sharp Pick
With Rickey Rubio out for the Wolves, they lose a lot of upside on offense, and for a team that’s without Love and has been struggling to score, taking away their point guard for the next month or more is not going to help their playoff aspirations. However with their struggles to score come these very low totals, and at 200 points, the over actually looks like a solid play.
Sure the Rockets have been playing better defense, but will it hold in this game in a strange place? Dating back to last season a few games, the Wolves are now 7-3 cashing the over in their last ten games, and while the under is 9-0 in the Rockets last nine games, that trend will turn around soon. Outside of Howard and Trevor Ariza, this team doesn’t have too many good defenders. Sure Beverley is a good defender, but he won’t play in this game.
Plus we forget that the Rockets still have one of the better offenses in the NBA, and even if they hold the Wolves to only 92 points, it will only take 111 to cash the over for the Rockets. The over is 8-2 for the Rockets in their last 10 games following an ATS loss, and 18-6 in their last 24 games following a SU loss. Even though it may not be trending for this season yet, take the over for your NBA picks because the Rockets can’t keep up this defensive pace.
Free NBA Pick: OVER 201 at YouWager