Don’t expect a nail biter tonight at Toyota Center as the Rockets opened as 14.5 point favorites versus the Cavaliers. Tip off is scheduled for 8:00 p.m. EST.
That’s what happens when two of the Association’s most inattentive defensive teams tangle.
The Rockets have been letting opposing teams score with impunity this season. They rank 13th in most points allowed at 109.3 points per game, and are allowing opponents to shoot 47.0% from the field and 34.0% from beyond the arc. Houston forces 14.2 turnovers per game, and is 26th in the NBA in rebounding. Their defensive indifference could be their downfall.
The same can be said of the Cavaliers, who rank 23rd in most points allowed at 113.0 points per contest, and are letting opposing teams hit 47.0% of their field goals and 37.0% of their three-pointers. Cleveland is 25th in the NBA in rebounding at 42.2 boards per contest. They’ll need to do far better tonight to give themselves a fighting chance.
These two teams have already met once this season. The last time they played on November 25th, 2018, Cleveland won 117-108 behind 29 points from Collin Sexton.
The Cavaliers are fresh off a 124-140 loss versus the Pelicans in New Orleans in which they handed out 27 assists and came up with seven swipes. Jordan Clarkson torched the Pelicans for 21 points. The Rockets, meanwhile, are hot on the heels of a 116-109 loss vs the Bucks in Milwaukee in which they were 18 for 48 from deep were out-rebounded 57-52.
Overall, the Cavaliers have won zero of their last ten games and are 15th in the Eastern Conference, while the Rockets have dropped three of their previous ten and are seventh in the Western Conference.
The 14.5-point spread isn’t the only angle you can take advantage of. Sportsbooks have also set a generous over/under total of 218. Bear in mind that Cleveland is 19-23-0 against the spread this year and 22-20-0 over/under, compared to 20-19-1 ATS and 22-18-0 over/under for Houston.
Feeling intrigued? Tonight’s game gets underway soon!