Westbrook-Harden MVP Race Highlights Thunder at Rockets Sunday Showdown

Sunday, March 26, 2017 3:21 PM UTC

Sunday, Mar. 26, 2017 3:21 PM UTC

Russell Westbrook and the Oklahoma City Thunder clash with James Harden and the Houston Rockets Sunday afternoon (3:30 p.m. ET) with playoff seedings and MVP implications on the line. Click here for our best bet and preview.

<p>The Houston Rockets (50-22 SU, 40-30-2 ATS), all but locked into the third-seed in the Western Conference, <a href="https://www.sportsbookreview.com/betting-odds/nba-basketball/oklahoma-city-thunder-vs-houston-rockets-3067830/" title="Live Odds For This Game">hosts No. 6 Oklahoma City Thunder</a> (41-30 SU, 40-30-1 ATS) in a <a href="https://www.sportsbookreview.com/nba-betting-futures/" title="NBA Betting Futures">potential </a><a href="https://www.sportsbookreview.com/nba-betting-futures/" title="NBA Betting Futures">first round</a><a href="https://www.sportsbookreview.com/nba-betting-futures/" title="NBA Betting Futures"> playoff preview</a>. It’s the fourth and final regular-season meeting between the two. Houston is 2-1 SU and 1-1-1 ATS in the prior trio with three points or less determining each contest. Overall, James Harden and company are 8-3 SU and 7-2-2 ATS in the last 11 meetings.</p><p>The Thunder enter having won six of their last seven, covering the spread in each victory. Victor Oladipo’s return from 6-game absence due to a back injury has boosted the club in this stretch. The shooting guard has taken some pressure off Russell Westbrook offensively, making an impressive 39 percent of his catch-and-shoot 3-pointers according to the NBA’s SportVU data. Moreover, he runs the point when in with the second unit.</p><p>Westbrook, meanwhile, is torching the Rockets this season from the floor. In the previous three matchups, he’s averaging 35.3 points per game on 51.1 percent shooting. The MVP frontrunner recorded only one triple-double, however. It came in a 102-99 loss at Chesapeake Arena, one of only six defeats for the Thunder when accomplishing the feat (29-6 SU, 28-7 ATS).</p><p>The Rockets enter having won five of their last six at Toyota Center. They are 27-6 SU as home chalk thus season, but struggle to separate when up against competitive teams. As a single-digit favorite, Houston is 6-13 ATS, winning by 2.8 points per game against a -7.2 average line.</p><p>James Harden and company are also coming up short against the league’s better teams recently. Since Jan. 11, they are 4-8 SU and ATS versus foes with a winning record. Houston has tipped off chalk in all but three of the contests.</p><p>Houston will be without Ryan Anderson, who sprained his right ankle in the final minutes of the win over the Pelicans on Friday. The 6-foot-10 forward is averaging 13.5 points per game this season, and vital to the Rockets’ 3-point attack—Houston fires up a league leading 40.3 per game from downtown. Anderson’s 39.8 percent from behind the arc leads the team. In four games he’s missed this season, Houston is 2-2 SU and ATS, shooting just 29.9 percent from deep.</p><p>The Thunder are trending in the right direction, and the market is a step or two behind. Westbrook will take center stage in what is essentially a two-man race for the MVP with Harden. <a href="https://www.sportsbookreview.com/picks/nba/" title="Free NBA Picks">OKC +6 is the play</a>. Don’t be shocked if the Thunder strike on the money line as well.  </p><h2 style="text-align:center">Free NBA Pick: Oklahoma City Thunder +6</h2><h2 style="text-align:center">Best Line Offered: <a href="https://www.sportsbookreview.com/Sportsbook/?v=4422&amp;book=BetDSI" rel="nofollow" title="Top Rated Sportsbook">at BetDSI</a></h2><p style="text-align:left">[/]{"component":"oddswidget", "eventId":3067830, "sportsbooksIds":[123,1096,93,1275,19], "LineTypeId":1, "PeriodTypeId":1 }[/]</p>
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