- The Los Angeles Lakers are 5.5-point road favorites over the Houston Rockets on Tuesday night at the Toyota Center
- The Lakers beat the Rockets 120-102 on Sunday night as four-point favorites to open the two-game series
- A look at the lines, odds and spreads for Lakers-Rockets along with analysis can be found below
The Los Angeles Lakers and Rockets meet in the finale of a two-game series at 8 p.m. ET Tuesday at the Toyota Center in Houston following a testy matchup on Sunday.
The Lakers (8-3) have won six of their last seven games but are on a three-game losing streak against the spread. The Rockets (5-6) have lost three of their last four games both straight up and ATS and are underdogs in this one.
Lakers vs Rockets Odds
|Los Angeles Lakers||-235||-5.5 (-110)||Over 223 (-110)|
|Houston Rockets||+194||+5.5 (-110)||Under 223 (-110)|
Odds taken Jan. 12 from FanDuel
Defense Sparks Lakers
The Lakers won Sunday’s game, 120-102, fuelled by the dynamic duo of LeBron James and Anthony Davis along with a strong defensive effort.
Davis made his first nine field goal attempts on his way to a game-high 27 points. He was nine of 12 overall and scored at least 23 points for the fourth time in five games.
James added 18 points, which matched his season-low.
However, it was the Lakers defense that made a big difference. The Rockets had a season-high 21 turnovers while shooting 41.1% from the field and making just 12 of 41 attempts from 3-point range for 29.3%.
The Lakers, who are third in the league in defensive efficiency, scored 30 points off turnovers and 32 points in transition. They also finished with 13 steals and eight blocked shots.
Davis had three blocks. Talen Horton-Tucker made four steals and Alex Caruso added three.
— Alex Caruso (@ACFresh21) January 11, 2021
Los Angeles also scored 62 points in paint, thanks in part to shooting 58.1% on 2-pointers.
Jared Dudley (calf) and Wesley Matthews (Achilles) missed Sunday’s game and are considered day-to-day.
Rockets Out of Sync
Christian Wood scored 23 points and James Harden added 20 but the Rockets seemed out of sync throughout the game. Coach Stephen Silas was particularly disappointed in his team’s lack of effort in transition defense.
Wood has been a steady contributor in his first season with the Rockets after being acquired from the Detroit Pistons in an offseason trade. Wood has scored at least 20 points in all seven of his games and is averaging 23.3.
Christian Wood continues to impress!
3 games with the Rockets
21 PTS, 12 REB, 2 BLK (9/14 FG)
23 PTS, 2 BLK, 2 STL (4/5 3PT)
31 PTS, 13 REB (14/22 FG)pic.twitter.com/EYBiA7dt7L
— Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) January 1, 2021
Harden is the Rockets’ top scorer at 26 points a game. However, after averaging 37 points in three December games, that number has dipped to 17.8 in four games in January.
Part of Harden’s decreased production can be attributed to playing through an ankle injury.
Danuel House will miss his fifth straight game Tuesday because of a back injury. Eric Gordon (lower leg) and John Wall (migraine) are listed as questionable.
Sunday’s game was contentious as there were five technical fouls called along with two flagrant fouls. The Lakers’ Markieff Morris and Rockets’ DeMarcus Cousins were ejected in separate incidents.
Morris got thrown out in the first quarter following an altercation with Cousins. Morris knocked Jae’Sean Tate to the ground in the lane with a hard shoulder to the chest and Cousins pushed Morris to the ground.
Cousins then turned to bend down to help Tate off the court when Morris charged at Cousins and shoved him with both hands. Morris was quickly pulled away by teammates and officials but kept yelling at Cousins and tried following him to the bench.
Things got heated between Markieff Morris and Boogie 👀 pic.twitter.com/7eY3YnAOhA
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) January 11, 2021
Cousins got tossed in the second quarter when he tried to swipe at the ball while James was driving to the basket but instead hit him in the face. James was shaken up on the play but stayed in the game.
The Lakers have won five straight games against the Rockets, including four in a row to win the Western Conference semifinals last season after losing Game 1 of the series.
Look for the Rockets to be fired up after Sunday’s testiness and play a tighter game as they hang tough with the defending champions this season.
Pick: Rockets +5.5 (-110)
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