On the brink of elimination I am backing the Houston Rockets with my NBA picks to extend the Western Conference series one more game and send it back to California.
The Warriors have come out as a -4.5 favorite making the Rockets about +165 on the money line which where I will take them. After the throttling the Warriors put on the Rockets it seems this line would be closer to double digits, but I think the NBA odds makers have set about right. I like Houston though to bounce back after that horrible game they just had.
The Rockets are a decent bounce back team and maybe they thought because of their two close games with the Warriors they would be able to handle them at home. What I saw though was a team caught allowing way to many open looks, especially to Curry. Houston did not lose three games in a row all season until this last game and now they are looking at losing four in a row. I understand they are a little down without Beverley (second on the team in assists), but they have more than enough to beat the Warriors in Houston.
I have mentioned it before and it is worth saying again, the Rockets are one of the best teams defensively at home. Golden State is the kind of team that once it gets rolling they are nearly impossible to stop. After getting in and watching some tape the Rockets should come out with some real focus this game to avoid the sweep. At home they were 10th in the league in opponent field goal shooting percentage and they led the league in percentage from beyond the arc at below 30%. The biggest issue, and the Rockets know this, is that the Warriors got up 97 attempts… that is way too many and Houston should look to getting that number much lower to give them a good chance in this game. On the year at home the Rockets allowed an average of 86 shots per game, one of the worst in the league. But if they go back to see where they have been successful against Golden State, they will see the best chance they have would be similar to game two in which they allowed the Warriors under 80 attempts from the field.
The Warriors have owned the Rockets this season. I still like going against the trend though and think the Rockets are overdue to come out and play their best game of the series, add Houston to game 4 NBA picks tonight.
NBA Pick: Rockets +180 at The Greek