Fade Rockets While You Can and Pick Nets Instead in Matchup Friday

Jason Lake

Thursday, November 1, 2018 6:26 PM UTC

Thursday, Nov. 1, 2018 6:26 PM UTC

The Houston Rockets aren’t what they used to be. They’ve been a lousy NBA pick so far this season, and their misery should continue Friday night when they visit the Brooklyn Nets.

Jason’s 2018-19 NBA picks record through Oct. 31: 2-2 ATS, 1-1 Totals

Houston at BrooklynFriday, 7:30 p.m. ETFree NBA Pick: Nets ATSBest Line Offered: BetOnline

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Making NBA picks used to be more of an art form than it is today. Advanced stats weren’t so advanced, and the computer projections weren’t so reliable; concepts such as fading the public and keeping track of rest and travel were on the front burner. These concepts are still very important – they help explain why teams get over-valued or under-valued in the betting market. But it’s easy to lose that context when the “math” is so good at locating those profit margins for us.

It’s time to embrace the Old School again. The Brooklyn Nets opened as +2.5 home underdogs for Friday's game against the Houston Rockets, so the value is there for the taking on the NBA odds board.

My Yellow Is Not So ‘Melo

You don’t need a computer to tell you the Rockets (1-5 SU and ATS) are in rough shape. They were already on notice after letting Trevor Ariza and Luc Mbah a Moute walk in free agency during the offseason. Adding Carmelo Anthony to the mix won’t make Houston’s defense any better, even if they had to pay only $2.4 million for the former All-Star.

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My neighbor’s son dressed up as Carmelo Anthony. It’s so accurate! pic.twitter.com/aPSmTuvm51

— Lazy Stathead (IFB) (@LazierStathead) November 1, 2018
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Now the Rockets are leaning on Anthony (minus-5.7 BPM) a lot more than planned. Reigning league MVP James Harden (plus-7.3 BPM) is out with a hamstring injury and isn’t expected to be cleared in time to face Brooklyn. Harden has missed two games; Anthony started in his place, and Houston honked both games SU and ATS. Not that they were playing well before, but it’s even worse without Harden on the floor. Maybe we can take advantage before the betting market catches on – if it isn’t too late already.

It helps that the Nets (3-5 SU, 4-4 ATS) are supplying the opposition. They’ve been out of the spotlight for a few years now, tanking like a boss and working their way out of salary-cap hell. And it looks like the Nets have themselves a couple of promising players in center Jarrett Allen (plus-2.9 BPM) and swingman Caris “Don’t Call me Casanova” LeVert (plus-0.2 BPM) to go along with steady gunner Joe Harris (plus-0.6 BPM). You can thank GM Sean Marks for turning this mess around after taking the reins in 2016. There’s more work to be done, but for at least one night, they’ve got the jump on a team that won 65 games last year.

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