Rockets and Nets to stay ‘under’ is the NBA Pick

LT Profits Sports Group

Monday, January 12, 2015 2:48 PM UTC

Monday, Jan. 12, 2015 2:48 PM UTC

Each day the LT Profits Sports Group seeks out a total that simply does not add up and therefore offers the most value that day. Here is their Total Value Play of the Day for Monday.


A low scoring team facing a potentially road weary one could lead to an ‘under’ Monday night when the Houston Rockets (26-11, 13-5 away) pay a visit to the Brooklyn Nets (16-21, 8-11 home) at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY at 7:35 ET in a game available on YES.

The posted total at Bet365 is 193½ for this contest with the current odds on the ‘under’ set at -110.

Tied for Southwest Division Lead
The Rockets have now forged their way to a first-place tie with the Memphis Grizzlies in the Southwest Division at 26-11 as they have won three straight games, most recently defeating the Utah Jazz 97-82 at home on Saturday thanks to holding Utah to 41.4 percent shooting from the floor (29-for-70), offsetting the fact that the Rockets only shot 33-for-77, 42.9 percent themselves.

The Nets are heading in the total opposite direction having been the losing NBA picks in five straight games following a 98-93 loss to the Pistons in Detroit on Saturday. Brooklyn has an offense without much direction right now with point guard Deron Williams out with fractured cartilage in his rib, and the Nets were not exactly lighting up the scoreboard even before Williams was injured.

How Will Brooklyn Score?
The Nets are 25th in the NBA in scoring with their 95.5 points per game overall and they have been considerably worse than that over the last five games averaging a mere 86.8 points on 41.2 percent shooting, with their point guard obviously being sorely missed. Granted part of the Nets’ low scoring is due to their slow tempo as they are 25th in the league in Pace Rating, but that is not the only reason.

No, besides the slow pace, the more important reason for the low scoring average is poor shooting, as Brooklyn is ranked 19th in field goal percentage at 44.5 percentage and 25th in three-point shooting at 32.3 percent.

One thing that the slow pace has done is make the defense seem better than it really is as the Nets are actually sixth in the league in points against at 97.7 points per game, and that combination of bad offense and few points allowed makes Brooklyn a prime ‘under’ team. Furthermore we do not expect this game tonight to stray from the normal Nets’ preferred tempo because we think that the Rockets will welcome the slow pace.

Bad Scheduling for Rockets
We understand that would not normally be the case with the Rockets ranking seventh in pace rating, but a slow pace actually benefits them here because of a quirky schedule that might have them a little bit fatigued.

You see, Houston played three road games in four nights last week, ending with a date here in New York vs. the Knicks on Thursday, then went back home to Texas for just one game with that aforementioned win over Utah on Saturday, only to hop on a plane again and make this return trip to New York, this time visiting a different borough.

The Rockets are only in the middle of the pack in the NBA scoring-wise anyway ranking 14th with 101.5 points per game, and they are actually ranked lower than the Nets in field goal percentage, in 25th at 43.5 percent. Unlike Houston teams of recent years, this team’s success has been fueled by defense with the Rockets ranking third in the league in points against at 96.8 percent, fifth in field goal percentage allowed at 43.6 percent and second in three-point defense!

Second Best ‘under’ Record in NBA
Finally, the Nets are certainly accustomed to playing low scoring games as they have the second best ‘under’ record in the NBA at 24-13, including a remarkable 20-8 ‘under’ mark in the last 28 games! Only the Cleveland Cavaliers have a better ‘under’ record overall at 25-12-1.

Add this all up and expect a low scoring contest when Houston pays a visit to Brooklyn on Monday.

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NBA Pick: Rockets, Nets ‘under’ 193½ (-110)


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