All the games
Written byon December 31 at 7:00 PM EST and updated on December 24th at 6:42 pm EST
It's a battle of Western Conference opponents on Christmas Day in the Lone Star State. O Oklahoma City Thunder is on the road as they make the journey to face the Houston Rockets Tuesday afternoon. Oklahoma City fell 114-112 at home to the Timberwolves on Sunday night in the second game of a back lap. Houston comes from a 108-101 home win over the Spurs on Saturday night in their last competition. The Thunder has a 110-107 lead in the all-time regular season and has played the last two games. That includes a 98-80 home win in the first clash this season on Nov. 8.
Oklahoma City Thunder looking for victory at Bounceback
Oklahoma City failed to build their win over the Jazz when they fell in a bucket at home against Minnesota. The Thunder dropped half a game behind the Nuggets in the Northwest Division with the loss. Oklahoma City lost 10 points after the first quarter, rose to 10 in the half and was greater than 33-17 in the third quarter. In a final quarter, the Thunder gave up the winning bucket with 14 seconds to play and failed to pull it off. Oklahoma City shot 47.8 percent of the field, including nine of the 25 of the three-point range in the loss. Paul George had 31 points and 11 rebounds to lead the way in defeat.
// @hamidoudiallo and @ NerlensNoel3 I had a party last night. That's now 89 total blocks in the season, increasing the @PhillipsMurrah commitment of $ 8,900 for the @thundercares Foundation. pic.twitter.com/igudVO79L9
– OKC THUNDER (@okcthunder) December 24, 2018
The Thunder is slightly above the average offensively this season as they are 11º with an average of 112 points per game. Oklahoma City is 2na in the rebound league with 48.6 boards per contest. Thunder is 24º in assists with 22.6 per game. Oklahoma City is 5º in the championship in the defense of score as they allowed 105.6 points per night. Russell Westbrook is the second with 20.2 points, 10.8 rebounds, 10.3 assists and 2.63 steals per game. Paul George adds 26.2 points plus 8.2 boards and 2.19 steals a competition in his second year with the team. Steven Adams chips at 16.1 points plus 10 boards per night while Dennis Schroder adds 16.2 points and 4.5 assists per game. Jerian Grant (12.3 points, 4.7 rebounds), Corey Brewer, Terrance Ferguson, Andre Roberson, Raymond Felton, Alex Abrines and Patrick Patterson have to make known their presence at both ends. Roberson is still out after breaking his patellar tendon on January 27. He suffered a setback and will be absent until at least the middle of January, as a second surgery may be necessary. Oklahoma City is 19º in the league in percentage of field goal as the team shoots 45.7 percent of the ground. Thunder is 23rd with 9.9 made three per game and be tied for 29º in three shooting points at 32.7 percent.
Houston Rockets seeking sixth win in seven games
Houston won for the fifth time in six games as they beat the Spurs at home on Saturday night. The Rockets now try to climb a high season to three games over .500 if they can prevail here. Houston led by two after one and lost by two in the half before beating San Antonio by 43 to 26 in the third quarter to take control. The Rockets kept the Spurs in check late for the win. Houston shot 38.9 percent of the field, including 19 of 54 of the three-point range, and controlled the 58-43 glass. The Rockets were led by James Harden, who had 39 points and 10 assists in the win. Houston is 8-6-1 ATS at home, while the over is 9-6 in those contests. The Rockets signed with Austin Rivers for the rest of the season Monday, adding some depth to their rotation.
O #MVP WAS CLUTCH last night!
? 10AST pic.twitter.com/wvxTAfqnIl
– Houston Rockets (@HoustonRockets) December 23, 2018
The Rockets are fighting offensively so far this season: they are 19º in the league with 109.2 points per game. Houston is 27º in rebound with 41.3 boards per game and 27º with 21.4 assists per night. The rockets are 11º in defense of score, as they allow 108.5 points per game. James Harden leads the team with 32 points per game, picking up 5.7 boards and distributing 8.4 assists per night. Eric Gordon accumulates 15.3 points per contest, while Clint Chapel has averages of 17.1 points, plus 12.1 rebounds and two blocks per night. PJ Tucker, Nene Hilario, Austin Rivers, Gerald Green, Danuel House Jr., James Ennis III, Michael Carter-Williams and Chris Paul (15.6 points, eight assists, 2.08 steals) are key parts in the rotation also. Gary Clark is absorbing most of the minutes that were going to the late Carmelo Anthony. The Rockets are tied for 23rd in the league as a percentage of field goals, shooting 44.7 percent as a team. Houston is 1st in the league with 14.6 trios per night, while the team is tied for 19º shooting 34.5 percent from long range this season. Paul suffered a muscle injury in the Heat on Dec. 20 and has been absent for at least two weeks.
- Rockets are 5-0-1 ATS in the last 6 home matches
- Rockets are 4-0-1 ATS in their last 5 games against a team with a straight up
- Rockets are 4-0-1 ATS in their last 5 opponents of the Western Conference
- Thunder are 4-9 ATS in their last 13 games on Tuesday
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full Game Side Bet
The Rockets will miss Paul, but at least they have a few days to rest and recuperate after beating the Spurs. Oklahoma City is playing their third game in four nights here after hitting Utah Saturday and losing by a bucket on Sunday. The Thunder will have a hard time here, especially if Westbrook keeps fighting to kick the ball. With the Rockets at home and playing well lately, you have to give them a small advantage.
Prediction: Houston Rockets -1
Total Game Total Pick
This will be a clash between two teams who want to improve their playoff position at this point. Oklahoma City held the third seed in the Western Conference by entering this game while Houston placed himself back in the eighth and final playoff spot despite leading the Southwest Division. Both teams had their ups and downs, but the Thunder had the Houston number lately. Can the Rockets have some revenge in Oklahoma City here?
The under is 6-1 in the last 7 of the Thunder when his opponent scores 100 points or more in his previous game, 5-1 in his last 6 against a team with a straight up winner, 4-1 in his last 5 round matches against a team with a winning home record and 4-1 in their last 5 games after a straight defeat. Houston saw the under go 4-0 in their last 4 games Tuesday, 10-1 in their last 11 against the Northwest Division and 5-1 in their last 6 against a team with a victorious record up. The under is 5-1 in the last six encounters between the teams. Given the difficult defenses that both teams played this season, try to end it altogether.
Prediction: Less than 221