NBA Odds & Predictions: Houston Rockets at Denver Nuggets Friday February 1st, 2019
Houston Looks to Bounce Back As They Visit Red-Hot Denver
The Houston Rockets are coming off a disappointing loss against a hobbled Pelicans team. They’ll look to bounce back as they take on one of the NBA’s best, the red-hot Denver Nuggets.
The Rockets welcomed Chris Paul back to the lineup this week after more than a month out with a hamstring injury. He played 25 minutes and scored 12 points in the team’s 103-98 comeback win over Orlando on Sunday. He played 26 minutes and scored ten on Tuesday against the Pelicans and the team was hoping to increase his minutes for this game against the Nuggets.
Instead he was listed as questionable after Thursday’s practice with a sore back, which is a typical reaction to putting stress on the hamstrings.
James Harden scored 37 points in the loss and continues to score at a pace very few people have matched. He averaged a whopping 43.6 PPG in 14 January games and has now scored at least 30 points in 24 straight games. Wilt Chamberlain is the only player to better that number.
Denver has won four straight games and six of their past seven games as they’ve done a great job keeping pace with the Warriors for top spot in the Western Conference. In spite Golden State’s 11-game winning streak, they are just one game back in the standings. They are also tied for the best home record in the NBA at 22-4.
It’s been a pretty soft schedule of late with five of their most recent wins coming against Chicago, Cleveland, Memphis and most recently New Orleans. But the one win came against the 76ers in convincing fashion.
The Nuggets score by committee with seven players averaging somewhere between the 20.1 PPG that Nikola Jokic puts up and the 10.2 PPG of Monte Morris.
They are also one of the best defensive teams in the league and a good pick to at least slow down Harden, if not put an end to the 30-point scoring streak.
Since January 1, Houston is averaging 118.5 PPG and allowing 117.4 PPG. They are 8-6. On the road their record is 2-3, averaging 110.4 PPG and allowing 118.2 PPG.
Since January 1, Denver is averaging 114.8 PPG and allowing 108.0 PPG. They are 12-4. At home their record is 8-1, averaging 122.6 PPG and allowing 109.5 PPG.
Denver is -4.5 point favorites and the over/under is 227 points. This is a dominant home squad taking on a team that is overly reliant on its superstar having a hard time on defense. I think Denver comes up with enough for a solid win. The Pick: Nuggets 120-110.