Things have been going from bad to worse for the New Orleans Pelicans, who take on the Houston Rockets on Sunday after losing to them on Friday night on Jabari Smith Jr.’s game-winning 3 at the buzzer.
The Pelicans are now the No. 12 seed in the West, a full game out of the No. 10 spot. With Zion Williamson still out, the Pels are in danger of missing the playoffs.
This should be a winnable game, but what is going on in Houston lately?
The Rockets upset the Pelicans at home on Friday night, and now they are winners of three straight, moving out of the basement in the Western Conference.
Does all this momentum give Houston the edge on Sunday?
Here’s a look at the latest odds:
Pelicans vs. Rockets odds, spread and total
Pelicans vs. Rockets prediction and pick
There hasn’t been too much of a reaction to Houston’s two-point win on Friday, as the line has moved from 5.5 to 4.5 with the juice still on the Pels at -115 odds.
The Rockets rode a huge fourth quarter, outscoring the Pels 34-22 (with the help of Smith’s game-winner) to secure the victory.
Despite that, I’m not sold on Houston covering in this game.
The Rockets may have won three straight, but this team has still gone just 16-14-3 ATS as a home dog this season, losing those games by an average margin of five points.
The Pelicans cannot afford to blow another chance against this team, especially with the play-in tournament looking further and further out of reach with each loss.
The Rockets crushed New Orleans on the glass on Friday, but as long as the Pels can mitigate some of those second chances, they should bounce back.
Remember, Houston ranks 29th in net rating, 29th in defensive rating and 28th in offensive rating for a reason.
Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.
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