Rockets vs. Celtics Pick
Who Oddsmakers Like: Houston. According to oddsmakers at Bovada.lv, the Rockets are a 1.5-point favorite on the spread line. The total is set at 217 points. Houston opened as a 2.5-point favorite and the total was orginally at 215 points.
Who the Public Likes: Houston. As of Thursday afternoon, 56 percent of public bettors are sided with the Rockets.
Injury Report: Point guard Chris Paul has missed Houston's last two games with an abductor injury and it is unknown at this time whether he will be able to suit up. Clint Capela is ruled out with a facial injury. Luc Mbah a Moute has a dislocated shoulder and will be out another two-to-three weeks. For Boston, Jaylen Brown is questionable with an abdominal injury. Marcus Morris (knee) is also questionable. Gordon Hayward (broken ankle) is out for the season.
Who the Trends Like: Houston is 1-4 ATS in the last five meetings. The under is 5-0 in the last five meetings in Boston. The under is 19-7 in the last 26 meetings.
The Rockets have struggled some with Paul and Capela missing the lineup. Although James Harden is more than equipped to shoulder the load and Houston has solid role players, losing players of that kind of magnitude will certainly hurt your chances. Boston has had its own set of issues recently, but this is a contest where it seems like Brad Stevens will shine. As one of the brightest coaches in the game, Stevens is adept at drawing up game plans that frustrate an opponent. Irving should be able to have his way if Paul is out of the lineup. Take the hosts here as a small underdog.
NBA DAILY PREDICTION: BOSTON CELTICS +1.5