Wizards to Work Their Magic With Your NBA Picks vs. Rockets

Jason Lake

Wednesday, December 9, 2015 11:51 AM UTC

Wednesday, Dec. 9, 2015 11:51 AM UTC

Things just keep getting worse for the Houston Rockets. Their latest injury could make the Washington Wizards the proper NBA pick for Wednesday night's matchup.

Jason's 2015-16 record as of Dec. 8: 8-9 ATS, 2-1 Total


This is definitely not the right time for the Houston Rockets to lose another player. Trevor Ariza took a nasty fall during the first quarter of Tuesday's game against the Brooklyn Nets and never came back. Neither did the Rockets; they lost 110-105 as 5-point road faves, pouring cold water on what had been a lovely December run.

Ariza is considered day-to-day with a bruised lower back, which means he might not be able to play Wednesday night (7:00 p.m. ET) when Houston visits the Washington Wizards. And if my ears didn't deceive me, the commentators for the Rockets-Nets game said that Dwight Howard was supposed to sit out Wednesday, this being the second of back-to-back games. The Rockets are 2.5-point road dogs on the NBA odds board as we go to press with a total of 214.5.


Patrick! The Game
Just when things were starting to turn around for Houston (10-12 SU, 7-15 ATS). We finally got to see what a relatively healthy version of this team could do once Patrick Beverley (10.9 PER, –1.3 BPM) was put into the starting rotation on Nov. 27. That was the start of a 5-1 SU and 4-2 ATS ride for the Rockets. Everything was Camelot. They even got Donatas Motiejunas back in the lineup this week, leaving no-one in sick bay.

Maybe it's just as well if Ariza (10.8 PER, –1.4 BPM) takes some time off. This has been the worst season of his 12-year NBA career; then again, you're only as good as your teammates, and Ariza's performance improved once Beverley came off the injured list. Maybe everyone's numbers would have looked better with Beverley at the 1-spot instead of the alien creature that's inhabited Ty Lawson (8.6 PER, –6.2 BPM).


Wall of Voodoo
If Ariza needs some inspiration, he can look at John Wall (20.6 PER, +3.1 BPM), who was helped off the court with a knee injury during Sunday's 116-104 loss to the Dallas Mavericks (–2 away). Turns out it wasn't that serious, as Wall came back the very next day and dropped 26 points on the Miami Heat (–8 at home). Final score: Washington 114, Miami 103.

More good news for the Wizards (9-10 SU and ATS), as center Marcin Gortat is expected to play Wednesday after missing three games tending to family matters. Gortat (16.4 PER, –0.3 BPM) hasn't been playing his best basketball this year, but if Howard isn't going to suit up on Wednesday, Gortat's return makes Washington a compelling NBA pick. He's certainly a much better player than his emergency replacement, Ryan Hollins (6.4 PER, –8.1 BPM in 43 minutes). And I see the Wiz are available at –2 if you shop around. We'll take a dozen, and may the sphere be with you.

Free NBA Pick: Wizards -2 at BetCRIS

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