2017-2018 NBA Previews – Rockets Odds
Looking for 2017 Houston Rockets Predictions? We’ve got your back. The Houston Rockets made it to the Western Conference Semifinals last year. Vegas set the over under at 54.5 games for 2017-18 and many national outlets have the Rockets in the top five in the Western Conference.
Houston Rockets Season Preview
Head Coach: Mike D’Antoni
2017-17 Record: 55-27
Rockets Odds to NBA Title: +1600
Rockets Odds to Win Conference: +550
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The Houston Rockets had a great season last year. Finishing the regular season 28 games above .500. James Harden did everything for the Rockets. He even had a no show in the most important game of his career.
The Rockets lost in game six of the Western Conference Semifinals to the San Antonio Spurs, 110-75 at home.
Houston Rockets Strengths:
There is no way you can open up a topic about the Rockets and not bring up James Harden. Harden was playing at a MVP caliber level last season. He averaged 29 points, eight rebounds and 11 assists for the year.
All star point guard, Chris Paul will be helping Harden as his back court mate this season. Paul will bring his 18 points and nine assists, to a team who looks to challenge for the NBA crown.
Along with Paul and Harden, veteran Trevor Ariza returns as a third option for the Rockets. Ariza brings back his leadership and high level play on both sides of the ball back the the Houston lineup.
Sharp shooter Ryan Anderson will start at the stretch four position. Anderson shot over 40 percent from three point range last year.
Outside of the stars, Clint Capella will start at center for the Rockets. Capella is a little undersized at 6’10, but will look to improve on his 12.6 points and eight rebounds per game.
If Capella can blossom into a defensive presence around the rim, this could benefit the Rockets a ton this year. Capella is in his third year, so he has no excuses for poor play.
With Paul and Harden in the back court, this will free up a ton of open looks for the “others” in the lineup. Eric Gordon is also another key piece off the bench.
Gordon won the NBA’s sixth man of the year award. He averaged a shade over 16 points per game last season.
With the addition of Chris Paul, and the play of James Harden, this will only elevate the play of Houston’s supporting cast. Veterans PJ Tucker and Nene Hilario will continue to be work horses off the bench as well for the Rockets.
Houston Rockets Weaknesses:
As good as a Chris Paul, James Harden back court sounds, we have still yet to see the two in a live regular season game together. I understand the two have been working out and playing , but the chemistry has yet to be seen on the floor.
The bench could use a little help. Gordon, Hilario and Tucker are solid bench players, but how much does Nene have left in the tank? Will Bobby Brown be a solid backup for Paul?
If not, then Houston will definitely have a problem.
Defense is also something the Rockets will need to work on a bit this season. The Rockets allowed 109 points per game last year. Ranking them 26th out of 30 NBA teams.
Scoring the ball won’t be an issues for the Rockets. They have an abundance of talent scoring the ball, but how the team gels together with Chris Paul, will clarify if the trade was the best for the Rockets.
Adding another key piece on defense off the bench, could could put the Rockets into the Western conference finals (possibly). If not their season will be over in the Semis again this year.
Houston Rockets Betting Prediction: 58-24
Vegas has set the over/under at 54.5 games for the Rockets. Expect the team to exceed that win total, and win closer to 60 games instead of 55 this year.
The off season is key for Houston this year. The team understands the season is 82 games, and the first few weeks, could take some getting use to each other.
The best part about that is predicting how the team will play together this season.
The real key to the Rockets success (as mentioned earlier) is the chemistry Paul will have with his new team mates in Houston. If the Rockets can get that down, they should be a contender.
As for 2017-18, the Houston Rockets will be one of the most talked about teams in the NBA. Expect Houston to start out a little slow, but pick things up around the all star break.
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