Yesterdays Results: 1-2
All Time Results: 20-22-1, -3.5 units
Golden State Warriors @ Houston Rockets Under 231.5 - 3 units
1. Familiarity has helped these teams quell the other's offensive fire power in recent match ups. These teams have played each other 10 times in the past year and have scouted each other thoroughly, as they are each other's their biggest competition. Were it not for overtime play, the under in this series would be 8-1 over the last 9 in regular season games, and 14 and 2 when including playoffs.
2. The Warriors Kevin Durant replacements are awful from range. Alfonso Mckinnie and Damion Lee excel more for their hustle and offensive rebounding than for their shooting, which should have the cumulative affect of a slower game and less made threes. Non 3-point shooters Andre Iguodala and Shaun Livingston will also see increased minutes. In the past 6 games KD has missed the average amount scored by both teams is 195, and the Under has hit 5 times.
3. James Harden is having his coldest month of the year, with a true shooting percentage of 52%. With Chris Paul offering him little help this month, (less than 9 points per game) Harden has had to take on more of the burden again, which is wearing on him now that we are in the 6th month of the season.
Golden State +3.5 @ Houston Rockets - 1 unit
1. Outlier game for the Warriors: the Dubs haven't been an underdog with Steph Curry in the lineup since March 2017.
Since the end of the 2015-2016 season, the Warriors have been regular season underdogs 14 times. On 11 of those occasions they were without Steph Curry and in those games they went 1-10 SU and 2-9 ATS. With Steph Curry in the lineup, however, the Dubs are 3-0 SU & ATS when underdogs over the past 2 seasons. Curry had a series best +56 +/- against these Rockets in the Western Conference Finals last year, & has posted 29.4 points per game on 66% True shooting on the road this season.
2. On the other hand, the Rockets recent winning streak has masked a poor stretch of play from Houston PG Chris Paul. In 5 games so far this month, Paul is shooting 26% from the field and 27% from beyond the arc, while usage has been as low as it has been all season. After missing most of January with injury, his conditioning may be catching up with him. His goal will be to be fully fit by the playoffs. In tonight's game if Harden isn't having a great shooting day, the 34 year old Paul will struggle to pick up the slack.
Memphis Grizzlies -1 @ Atlanta Hawks - 1 unit
Since Marc Gasol's last game with the team on February 2nd, Mike Conley is averaging 22.5 points per game and the Grizzlies are a surprising 8-5 in games with Conley in the lineup. These results have only gotten better recently: in the past 3 games Conley has averaged 31.3 points and the Grizzlies are 3-0. The Hawks have proven especially vulnerable to penetrating point guards, and Conley's savvy game is the perfect counter to exploit Trae Young current weaknesses.
Avery Bradley's 16.6 points per game would be the highest of his career for any season. He has been reinvigorated being a primary option for a team for the first time in several years.
2. Motivational edge: The Hawks, the younger team, are more interested in player development than results at the moment. Many of the Grizzlies' veterans such as Joakim Noah are hell bent on proving themselves viable NBA starters going forward. The only way they can prove themselves at this point in their careers is to contribute to winning games. The Grizz should also want to get out of the bottom 8 and accelerate sending their pick to Boston this year, rather than losing 2 picks next year in what should be a deeper draft.