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Rockets – Grizzlies

Rockets Grizzlies handicapping

The Houston Rockets will host the Memphis Grizzlies on New Year`s Eve at the Toyota Center.

The Rockets (20-15, 12-5 home) had a shaky start to the season to say the least, but the team got back on track in the last month and now is playing some great basketball. Houston won 9 of its last 10 games, the only loss coming by 2 points at Miami a couple of weeks ago. What`s more impressive is that the Rockets lost Chris Paul in that game against Miami, but still kept going without him, winning 4 games in a row – and all of them against top teams!

The Grizzlies (18-17, 8-10 away) are in a contrasting position compared to Houston. Not expected to make the playoffs, the Grizzlies were on fire at the start of the season, but have now lost momentum. Memphis lost 8 of its last 11 games and 6 of the last 8, dropping out of the playoff picture. Still, they haven`t been that bad, most of their losses being close. The schedule was also brutal, 10 of the last 11 games being against playoff caliber teams.

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Team news: The Rockets will miss Paul, Gordon and possibly Ennis. Reports suggest Ennis might return, but Gordon`s injury in the last match will be a huge loss. The Grizzlies might be without Parsons again. He has been healthy for a few days now, but for some reason he did not play.

The Rockets showed they can play without Chris Paul, which was somewhat surprising, but James Harden has been phenomenal and was able to lead this team to wins. However, the fact that Gordon also got hurt in the last game and will miss this game might be a bit too much for Houston.

Gordon is the second leading scorer for the Rockets and one of their 4 main players. In Paul`s absence, he took a leading role alongside Harden, shooting 17 times per game and averaging over 19 points per game. That production can not be replaced, as Houston has no other offensive options which could even get close to what Gordon does.

James Harden`s brilliance has been enough to keep Houston afloat even without Paul, but when you take out Gordon as well, even Harden might not be able to pull it off. He will truly have to do everything by himself against the Grizzlies, especially as the Rockets do not have much depth.

Memphis is not in good form, but they remain a good team, and even during this recent bad run, their games have been close. The Grizzlies actually lost only 4 times by double digits all season. So out of 17 losses, 13 have been by single digits! That is an amazing stat and shows their resilience.

With the Rockets badly banged up, Memphis has a chance here, and should at least be able to keep the game close. My tip is Memphis to cover a +5,5 handicap and I reckon this line will move down until game time. Prediction: Houston Rockets – Memphis Grizzlies 102 – 104.

Happy New Year to all our readers, and hopefully this pick will end a disappointing December on a positive note! I wish every one of you guys good health and all the best in 2019, as well as good profit alongside me and Betdistrict! 🙂 Rostick.

Pick: Grizzlies +5,5
Odds: 1.91 @ Jetbull
Stake: 8
Possible profit: 7.28
Event date: 31 December

About Rostick

Former bookie & water polo player. Rugby Union expert. - EDITOR INFO & STATS
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