Point: Ride the Rockets in Game 3

Saturday, May 19, 2018 5:31 PM UTC

Saturday, May. 19, 2018 5:31 PM UTC

The Rockets evened the series with a 127-105 home court victory on Wednesday night but the series shifts to Golden State on Sunday. Let’s see what the NBA odds board says about this pivotal Game 3 Western Conference Finals matchup.

<p>[/]{"component": "embedHTML", "code": "&lt;blockquote class=\"twitter-tweet\" data-lang=\"en\"&gt;&lt;p lang=\"en\" dir=\"ltr\"&gt;RT to congratulate &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/CapelaClint?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;@CapelaClint&lt;/a&gt; on being named a finalist for the 2017-2018 &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/NBA?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;@NBA&lt;/a&gt; Most Improved Player! 🚀&lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/hashtag/NBAAwards?src=hash&amp;amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;#NBAAwards&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href=\"https://t.co/6AYhPgPVDs\"&gt;pic.twitter.com/6AYhPgPVDs&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/p&gt;— Houston Rockets (@HoustonRockets) &lt;a href=\"https://twitter.com/HoustonRockets/status/997192529002008578?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw\"&gt;May 17, 2018&lt;/a&gt;&lt;/blockquote&gt;\n&lt;script async src=\"https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js\" charset=\"utf-8\"&gt;&lt;/script&gt;\n"}[/]</p><h2 style="text-align:center"><a href="https://www.sportsbookreview.com/betting-odds/nba-basketball/houston-rockets-vs-golden-state-warriors-3468650/" title="Top Rated Sportsbook"><strong>Warriors (67-27 SU, 39-52-3 ATS) vs Rockets (74-20 SU, 48-44-2 ATS)</strong></a></h2><p style="text-align:center">[/]{"component":"oddswidget", "eventId":3468650, "sportsbooksIds":[93,169,19,1096,180], "LineTypeId":1, "PeriodTypeId":1}[/]</p><h2 style="text-align:center"><strong>Free NBA Pick: Rockets +7 ½</strong></h2><h2 style="text-align:center"><strong>Best Line Offered: <a href="https://www.https://www.sportsbookreview.com/Sportsbook/?v=4518&amp;book=Bookmaker" title="Top Rated Sportsbook">at Bookmaker</a></strong></h2><h2 style="text-align:center"> </h2><p><strong>What’s Trending</strong></p><ul> <li>Houston is 6-1 ATS in their last seven after allowing 100 points or more in their previous game.</li> <li>Houston is 10-3 ATS in their last 13 games playing on three or more days rest.</li> <li>Houston is 6-2 ATS in their last eight Sunday games.</li> <li>Golden State is 6-13 ATS in their last 19 games vs. a team with a winning percentage above .600.</li> <li>Golden State is 8-18 ATS in their last 26 when their opponent scores 100 points or more in their previous game.</li> <li>Golden State is 7-16 ATS in their last 23 Sunday games.</li></ul><p>The masses, including my SBR colleague Doug Upstone, had left the Rockets for dead after their Game 1 defensive meltdown in which they fell 119-106 to the Warriors. Despite that lopsided loss, the <a href="https://www.sportsbookreview.com/betting-odds/nba-basketball/">NBA odds </a>board still reflected the Rockets as 1 ½ point favorites but the public was clearly flocking to the Warriors with images of another Houston massacre dancing in their heads. However, those who understood that the Rockets made their bones this season on a stouter, more aggressive defense knew that their inability to contain Golden State was more the exception than the rule. It should be noted that containing Golden State means limiting them to under 110 points, which is about as much as one can expect from an offense that features Steph Curry, Kevin Durant, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green.</p><p>Houston was locked, loaded, and ready to fire as I knew they would be when I advised my readers to stay strong and don’t let the Doug Upstone’s of the world steer you wrong. James Harden led the Rockets with 27 points but had a dismal showing from beyond the arc, connecting on just 3 of 15 long balls. But the funny thing was he didn’t need to be Superman in this one as he had more than a little help from his friends. Chris Paul notched 15, PJ Tucker scored 22, Trevor Ariza contributed 19, and super-sub Eric Gordon matched Harden’s game-high total with 27 points of his own. The Rockets clamped down on Curry from the perimeter and it worked as the two-time MVP was just 1 of 8 from three-point land and had 15 points but was the only Warrior to score in double digits besides Kevin Durant with 38 on the night.</p><p>We don’t expect Stephen Curry to be nearly as vexed as he was in Game 2 but Houston now knows that even a sharpshooter like Curry can be rendered merely mortal if challenged often enough while Kevin Durant seems impervious to any defense that the Rockets design to contain him. We can expect more of the same but if Houston could muscle him down low, it would be worth the fouls. These teams have met only once in Golden State which happened to be the season opener where the Rockets stunned the Warriors 122-121 as nine-point road dogs. Although a track meet like that would not favor Houston we see the Rockets continuing to slow down the Warriors and grind out an ATS cover which is why we will include Houston in our <a href="https://www.sportsbookreview.com/picks/nba/">NBA picks</a> in Game 3. If you’d like to see what the GSW fanboys are saying then check out Doug Upstone’s column…just for kicks!</p>
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