On Monday night the Charlotte Hornets will travel to Houston to take on the Rockets. The Rockets lead the all time series 44-14, and the Rockets have won 5 straight head to head against the Hornets.
The Hornets are coming off a 131-114 loss on the road to the Bucks on Saturday. Last Wednesday they lost 91-84 to the Heat at home, and on Friday they beat the Wizards 112-111 at home.
The Rockets are coming off a 107-91 win over the 76ers at home on Friday. Last Sunday they beat the Celtics 115-104 on the road and last Tuesday they beat the Raptors 107-95 on the road.
On the season the Hornets are 29-35-2 ATS, 13-18 ATS on the road, and 2-7-1 ATS in their last 10 games. On the season the Rockets are 30-33-2 ATS, 17-14-1 ATS at home, and 5-4-1 ATS in their last 10 games.
Intertops has the Rockets as 10.5 point favourites with an O/U total of 227.5.
F Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (knee) – GTD, G Jeremy Lamb (hamstring) – GTD, C Bismack Biyombo (knee) – GTD, G Tony Parker (rest) – GTD
(30-36 overall, 9-22 on the road, 3-7 in last 10)
The Hornets average 110.8 PPG, 44.2 RPG, 10.0 ORPG, 23.2 APG, 7.1 SPG, 5.1 BPG, and 12.8 TPG. As a team they shoot 45.0% from the field, 79.2% from the free throw line, and 35.2% from 3 point range. Defensively they hold their opponents to 111.7 PPG, 45.5 RPG, 46.8% shooting from the field, and 35.3% shooting from 3 point range.
They are led by point guard Kemba Walker who averages 24.9 PPG, 4.2 RPG, 5.8 APG and 1.3 SPG while shooting 42.8% from the field, 83.2% from the free throw line, and 35.3% from 3 point range. Jeremy Lamb contributes 15.2 PPG, 5.6 RPG, 2.2 APG and 1.0 SPG while shooting 44.3/87.9/33.5. Marvin Williams adds 10.6 PPG, 5.7 RPG, 1.3 APG, 0.9 SPG, 0.8 BPG and 38.0% shooting from 3 point range. Cody Zeller (10.1 PPG/6.8 RPG/2.2 ORPG/2.1 APG/0.8 BPG), Nicolas Batum (9.9 PPG/5.3 RPG/3.5 APG/1.0 SPG/39.2% from 3), Malik Monk (9.6 PPG/1.7 RPG/1.7 APG) and Tony Parker (9.3 PPG/1.5 RPG/3.8 APG) all chip in as well.
(40-25 overall, 23-9 at home, 8-2 in last 10)
The Rockets average 113.2 PPG, 41.5 RPG, 10.4 ORPG, 21.0 APG, 8.6 SPG, 5.2 BPG, and 13.7 TPG. As a team they shoot 44.8% from the field, 78.8% from the free throw line, and 34.9% from 3 point range. Defensively they hold their opponents to 110.5 PPG, 44.9 RPG, 47.4% shooting from the field, and 34.2% shooting from 3 point range.
James Harden leads the way with 36.6 PPG, 6.5 RPG, 7.5 APG and 2.2 SPG while shooting 44.0% from the field, 87.8% from the free throw line, and 36.2% from 3 point range. Clint Capela adds 16.7 PPG, 12.5 RPG, 4.6 ORPG and 1.7 BPG while shooting 63.4/61.3/00.0. Chris Paul chips in 15.5 PPG, 4.5 RPG, 8.3 APG and 2.0 SPG. Eric Gordon (16.3 PPG/2.4 RPG/2.1 APG), Kenneth Faried (14.9 PPG/9.4 RPG/4.0 ORPG/0.9 BPG/46.2% from 3), Austin Rivers (10.0 PPG/2.3 RPG/2.7 APG/0.7 SPG) and P.J. Tucker (7.7 PPG/6.1 RPG/1.6 SPG/37.9% from 3) contribute as well.
C Nene Hilario (rest) – GTD, F Kenneth Faried (hip) – questionable
The Hornets just have not met expectations this season, and are hitting another low point having lost 6 of their 9 games post All Star Break, losing by an average of 8.7 PPG in those losses. The Rockets are hitting their stride with their team getting back to full strength, having won 7 straight games and averaging a +13 scoring margin in their last 3 games, 2 of which they were underdogs in. Not having Faried would hurt, as he has been a major diamond in the rough since coming in a few weeks ago, but addition by subtraction in the face of Clint Capela returning gives the Rockets back their true interior presence on both sides of the floor.
Not to mention the fact that James Harden has been superhuman this season, and throwing in the supporting cast of Gordon, Paul, Rivers, and Green gives them a dynamic blend of shooting and playmaking that the Hornets just cannot hope to match. The Rockets are peaking at the right time, expect a big time win here.
Final Pick: Houston Rockets (-10.5