Free NBA Pick: Hornets vs Pistons NBA Odds
Looking for New Orleans Pelicans vs. Houston Rockets free NBA picks & NBA odds? NBA betting sees the Pelicans taking on the Rockets on Friday March 24, 2017 at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas. Cappers Picks provides complimentary expert handicapping picks on all NBA basketball matchups so stay tuned for more FREE daily NBA hoops predictions.
(30-41) New Orleans Pelicans vs. Houston Rockets (49-22)
Date: Friday March 24
Time: 8:00PM EST
Venue: Toyota Center, Houston Texas
NBA Moneyline Odds: -110
NBA Betting Odds: -7 Rockets
NBA Betting Total: 228.5
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Division opponents, the New Orleans Pelicans and Houston Rockets, will square off for the last time of the season on Friday. The Rockets have taken two of three of the season series thus far, losing the last meeting between these two teams only a week ago.
The Rockets have already clinched a playoff berth and appear destined for the three seed in the Western Conference Playoffs. The Pelicans however, still fresh off the trade for DeMarcus Cousins, are in a race for the eight seed.
The Pelicans are four games behind the Denver Nuggets, currently holding the eight seed, but would have to jump two other teams on their path to the playoffs. It’s beginning to look unlikely, but for now every win could go a long way.
New Orleans Pelicans
The Pelicans, in the immediate wake of receiving Cousins from the Sacramento Kings, were a mess on the basketball court. Despite having two of the best big men in all of the league, it did little to assist in winning games at first.
In fact, based on net rating, the Pelicans are better when Cousins and Anthony Davis are not sharing the floor together and played their best basketball in games in which Cousins was suspended and/or in foul trouble.
However, this could simply be growing pains of having two talented big men on the floor at the same time, in a league that has gone the way of floor spacing.
But they are beginning to show some continuity as a team. The Pelicans in their last 10 games have improved their offensive and defensive rating compared to their season averages, which amounts to a five point improvement in total net rating during that time.
The Pelicans have also improved across the board in the same 10 game sample, improving in rebounding rate, effective field goal percentage and slight increase in three point shots made and attempted.
While the early returns of the Pelicans weren’t sunny, the clouds are beginning to part and they are beginning to resemble a forceful team with two All NBA talents.
In addition to improving in some of the more advanced facets of the game, they have begun to manifest in the way of wins.
They have gone 5-1 in their last six games, to include a victory against this same Houston Rockets team, to include wins against two other teams currently in playoff position.
The Rockets meanwhile have been good all season long, winning 61 percent of their games and have been consistently in the top three of the Western Conference.
Houston also employs a likely MVP candidate in James Harden, a preeminent playmaker in the mold of Steve Nash that can score at levels near the top of the league.
The Rockets are a team that require a well rounded defensive effort from their opponent, specifically on the wing.
Houston leads the league in three pointers made this season, averaging 14.5 per game, and also shoots more than seven threes per game than the next team.
As a result of the sheer number of three pointers they take and maker per game, the Rockets are second in the league in scoring at just more than 115 points per game.
And the reason that this team has been so good this year is that despite some concerns that their defense would be porous, they have been about league average, allowing just 105 points per game.
NBA Betting Trends:
- New Orleans is 2nd over the last 10 games in defensive rating
- Houston is 16-19 ATS at home
- New Orleans is 4-1 over the last 5 games ATS
Free New Orleans Pelicans vs. Houston Rockets NBA Prediction:
New Orleans is starting to surge after settling into their new team makeup, winning five of their last six, and have incentive to win every game.
4* Free NBA Betting Pick: Pelicans +7
The Rockets, while not resting players, will begin to coast into the playoffs with little to play for. New Orleans I believe will keep it close, but lose.
NBA Free Score Prediction: New Orleans 105 – Houston 111
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