The Los Angeles Lakers (10-18) will attempt to snap the 14-game winning streak of Houston when they travel to Toyota Center to square off against the Rockets (25-4). Houston is a 14-point favorite on the opening line, while the games Over/Under (O/U) opened at 224.5 points. Action starts at 8 p.m. ET on Wednesday, December 20, 2017, and it can be seen on NBATV.
Los Angeles Lakers vs. Houston Rockets Free Preview
The Lakers lost a tough one against the Golden State Warriors in their last matchup, 116-114. Los Angeles Kyle Kuzma put together a good performance, leading the team in scoring with 25 points on 10-for-16 shooting. Golden State had an offensive rebounding percentage of 28.3 (above their season average of 21.1). Los Angeles, meanwhile, had a free throw rate of 0.239 (above their season average of 0.181).
In the Rockets last game, they blew out the Utah Jazz, 120-99. Houston’s Clint Capela was a key piece with 24 points and 19 rebounds. Houston played a nearly perfect game. They had a great free throw rate of 0.299 (above their season average of 0.242) and an offensive rebounding percentage of 30.8 (above their season average of 21.4). For those same stats, Utah was 0.077 and 11.1, respectively.
The high-powered offense of Houston will go head-to-head against the mid-tier defense of Los Angeles. The Rockets rank first in offensive efficiency, while the Lakers are 11th in defensive efficiency. The Rockets figure to have the advantage on that side of the ball.
Of Los Angeles 28 games, 14 have finished over the projected point total, while 15 of Houston’s 29 games have finished over the O/U total. The Rockets have the superior straight up (SU) record (25-4 vs. 10-18) and a slight edge against the spread (ATS) (16-12-1 vs. 14-14).
Chris Paul has been playing at a high level over the last five games for Houston, averaging 26.0 points, 7.6 assists, 5.6 rebounds and 3.0 steals per game.
These teams have already met once this season. The two teams combined to put up 213 points in that game, which was under the projected point total of 222.5. The Rockets won 118-95, covering as 11-point favorites. Houston had a much better effective field goal percentage (0.578 vs. 0.435). Los Angeles, on the other hand, did an excellent job of converting from the free throw line (22-30; 73.3 percent). James Harden was the games top overall scorer with 36 points.
Los Angeles Lakers at Houston Rockets Free Prediction
Predictions: SU Winner – Rockets, ATS Winner – Lakers, O/U – Over
- The Rockets rank third in steals per game (9.3) while the Lakers rank 22nd in steals allowed per game (8.3).
- Los Angeles averages 15.6 fast break points per game, which ranks second in the NBA. Houston ranks 19th in fast break points allowed per game (11.7).
- Houston ranks first in three pointers attempted per game (43.2) while Los Angeles ranks 20th (26.8).
- Houston ranks 11th in assists per game (22.7) while Los Angeles ranks 16th in assists allowed per game (22.7).
- On the road, Los Angeles is 6-8 ATS with 8 unders and 6 overs.
- At home, Houston is 7-8-1 ATS with 9 overs and 7 unders.
- Houston is 11-1 when they hold opponents under 100 points, while Los Angeles is 5-2.
- When scoring above 100 points, the Lakers are 10-11 and the Rockets are 25-2.
- The Rockets rank 10th in blocks allowed per game (4.6) while the Lakers rank 27th (5.7).
- Houston ranks second in rebounds allowed per game (40.5) while Los Angeles ranks 28th (46.2).
- The Lakers average 54.6 points in the paint per game, which ranks first in the NBA. The Rockets rank 25th in points allowed in the paint per game (46.9).
- The Rockets rank 11th in second chance points allowed per game (11.6) while the Lakers rank 27th (13.7).
- Houston ranks fourth in points off turnovers per game (19.0) while Los Angeles ranks 27th in points off turnovers allowed per game (19.3).
- Houston is 2-2-1 ATS with 4 overs and 1 under in their last five games.
- Over their last five games, Los Angeles is 4-1 ATS with 3 overs and 2 unders.
- The Rockets average margin of victory in their last five games has been 11.8, up from 11.3 for the season.
- During their last five games, the Lakers have scored an average of 110.4 points per game (3.8 above their season average) and allowed an average of 110.6 points per game (1.0 above their season average).