It's time to back the Houston Rockets to make it six straight wins as they take on the Thunder, writes Unibet basketballl colulmnist Mark Woods...
Oklahoma City Thunder 1.58, Houston Rockets 2.40 - BET and WATCH live on Unibet TV from 00.05 GMT
Following five straight wins, 15 victories from their last 17, illustrating they are a handle for everyone.
But now it gets a little tougher for the Rockets, starting on Tuesday, as they tip off a three-game road swing that begins with a visit to the Oklahoma City Thunder before venturing onward to Chicago and Miami.
Pass through those trio unscathed and we can really legitimise Houston’s championship candidacy with their odds currently out at 12.00.
Now, however, might be as good a time as any to take on OKC who have dropped two straight and lost five of eight since the All Star break, a spell which has seen the Thunder give up at least 100 points on all but two occasions and slip behind San Antonio in the rankings.
That should be easy pickings for their guests who are still averaging 105.8 points per game on the road and who are great value for the win here at 2.45. But look under the total points line of 216.5 at 1.95, with Oklahoma City’s best hope in luring Houston into a war.
Memphis Grizzlies 1.62, Portland Trail Blazers 2.33 - BET and STREAM live on Unibet TV from 00.05 GMT
It’s a measure of the slippage of the Portland Trail Blazers that they’re 2.33 to win at the Memphis Grizzlies, despite an offense that continues to put up a league-best 107.7 per night.
But they’ll have strong memories of their last clash with the Grizz, just six weeks ago, when they were held to their lowest scoring tally of the season in a 98-81 defeat. It’s worth a punt on going under the points line here of 198.5 at 1.92.
Portland has lost two in a row while Memphis has won back-to-back games and seven out of ten to move past Phoenix into the Western Conference playoff places. And with a tough defensive group that is starting to look like the Grizzlies of old, they’re a team no-one will want to face in the post-season.
Best bet: Back Houston for the win over Oklahoma City at 2.45