NBA Preseason Picks: Houston Rockets vs San Antonio Spurs

Tony Parker with the ball during a preseason game

Friday, October 21, 2016 5:51 PM GMT

The Rockets will travel to San Antonio tonight to meet the Spurs after walloping the Mavs last night. Let’s check out what the NBA oddsmakers are dealing and cash a winning NBA pick.

 

 

Rockets (5-1) vs. Spurs (3-2) Prediction

Houston is coming off a 109-91 thrashing of the Mavericks last night while the Spurs have been inactive since their October 14th contest when they fell 108-100 at home to the Miami Heat. Rockets’ point guard Patrick Beverley will be sidelined in this contest as well as the early part of the regular season as it appears surgery is on the horizon for a lingering left knee injury. Eric Gordon will be pressed into action as his replacement but the tenacious defensive wizard will be missed. Pablo Prigioni will most likely sit this one out with a shoulder injury as well.

As we know, Dwight Howard took his talents and the Hawks’ money all the way to Atlanta so there will be no big time center in the lineup this season for the Rockets. Instead, expect a platoon with veteran Nene Hilario and 22-year-old Clint Capela. Hilario was rested against the Mavericks last night and will most likely see only limited action in this final preseason contest.

The Spurs, known primarily for their suffocating defense, had too little offense to handle a third quarter run by the Miami Heat in their last contest. Kawhi Leonard and Dewayne Dedmon led the Spurs with 11 points apiece while Tony Parker, Pau Gasol and Jonathon Simmons all contributed 10 points in the eight-point home loss.

 

So how do these two teams match-up tonight? The Spurs are 4-0 ATS in their last four games playing on three or more days of rest and the NBA oddsmakers are factoring that into this equation by installing San Antonio as a 7 ½ point home favorite over a team that has lost only one preseason contest.

Yet, I think that number is fair considering that the Rockets are traveling from Dallas while the Spurs have been resting comfortably for a week. I do not envision the newly minted Houston head coach Mike D’Antoni going full throttle in a meaningless game. The Spurs are still a top-notch defensive squad and that should quell any offense by a Rockets’ team that will be light on veterans, giving the youngsters a chance to get minutes against an NBA opponent.

Though the line is a bit higher than I’d like it, I will have to lay the lumber and back the Spurs in my NBA picks tonight.

 

Free NBA Pick: San Antonio -7 ½

Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes

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