NBA Picks: Take Red-Hot Hornets To Cover ATS At Home vs. Rockets

Jake Walker

Saturday, March 12, 2016 6:03 PM GMT

The Houston Rockets (33-32) travel to Time Warner Cable Arena to face the Charlotte Hornets (36-28). The Hornets are favored by 5 points on the NBA odds board and the total is set at 214.5.

Houston Rockets
The Houston Rockets have won four of their last five games to move to seventh-place in the Western Conference standings, a half-game behind the Portland Trail Blazers. The Rockets are coming off an impressive 102-98 road win against the Celtics last night. James Harden led the way with 32 points, including Houston's final eight, to help his team snap the Celtics' 14-game home winning streak. Michael Beasley added 18 points and eight rebounds and Dwight Howard finished with 12 points and 12 rebounds.

The Rockets score 105.7 points per game (fifth in the league) and shoot 44.5 percent from the floor and 34.4 percent from three-point range and they pull down 42.7 rebounds per game. Houston allows 106.8 points per game and their opponents shoot 46.2 percent overall and 36.3 percent from beyond the arc and grab 44.8 rebounds per game.

James Harden leads the team with 29.0 points and 7.0 assists, Dwight Howard averages 14.9 points and team-bests with 12.1 rebounds and 1.5 blocks and Trevor Ariza adds 12.4 points and a team-best 2.1 steals.

 

Charlotte Hornets
With six straight wins, the Charlotte Hornets are one of the hottest teams in the league. The Hornets beat the Pistons convincingly, 118-103 last night.  Marvin Williams scored 22 points and tied a career-high with five 3-pointers and Nicolas Batum added 17 points and 11 assists for a Hornets team that has won 12 of their last 14 games.

The Hornets average 102.9 points per game (10th in the league) on 43.5 percent shooting overall and 35.7 percent shooting from three-point range (eight in the NBA) and they pull down 43.9 rebounds per game. Defensively, Charlotte allows 100.7 points per game (10th in the league) and their opponents shoot just 44.4 percent from the floor and 34.9 percent from beyond the arc and grab 44.6 rebounds per game.

Kemba Walker leads the Hornets with 21.3 points and 1.7 steals, Nicolas Batum averages 14.5 points and a team-best 5.5 assists and Al Jefferson adds 12.1 points and 5.8 rebounds.    

 

Betting Trends
The Rockets are 13-13 ATS as an underdog, 4-8 ATS on Saturday games, 6-9 ATS when playing on back-to-back days, 9-15 ATS in non-conference games and 2-6 ATS after 3 or more consecutive wins. The Hornets are 17-14 ATS as a favorite, 18-14 ATS in home games, 11-5 ATS in the second half of the season, 5-1 ATS in March games, 11-6 ATS after a win by 10 points or more and 18-14 ATS when playing against a team with a winning record.    

 

Final Analysis
The Hornets are a 5-point favorite on the NBA odds board and the total has been set at 214.5. This will be the second of the season between these two teams. The Rockets beat the Hornets 102-95 on December 21 behind 36 points and seven assists from James Harden. Kemba Walker led Charlotte with 14 points.    

The Rockets have improved as a team as of late and James Harden will help them be competitive in this game but I can't ignore the betting trends and how well the Hornets are playing right now. I like the Hornets to cover -5 at home as one of my NBA picks.

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NBA Pick: Hornets -5
Best Line Offered: at Heritage