Houston Rockets Visit Sacramento Kings in NBA West Action

The NBA season is winding down but there is still some good value to be had. This looks to be an attractive matchup as the Houston Rockets head to the Golden 1 Center to take on the Sacramento Kings. Generally speaking, we like what we’ve seen from the Kings this year. Without much veteran talent on the roster they’ve improved by 11 wins already over last year’s record. They still struggle on the road (15-24 SU) but they’ve re-established their home court as a tough venue for any opposing team to visit. The Kings are 23-15 SU/24-13-1 ATS and have solid marks both as a home chalk (10-5 ATS) and as a home dog (14-8-1 ATS). Although they haven’t been good on the road when stepping up in class credit to them for ‘taking care of business’ on the road against overmatched teams. As a road favorite, Kings are 7-2 SU/ATS. It’s easy to lose focus on the road against teams that you *should* beat and it’s a very positive sign for Sacto fans that their team did so well as away chalk.

That being said, this looks like a good spot to play on the visitor. While Sacramento is out of playoff consideration the Houston Rockets still have much business to take care of before the postseason begins. Pending the outcome of Monday’s games, Houston can still move up in the standings. They currently trail the second place Denver Nuggets by 2.5 games and even the Golden State Warriors are still within reach–at least in theory. Golden State holds a 3.5 game lead over Houston which makes them tough to run down but not insurmountable. A bigger concern for the Rockets can be found in their rear view mirror. There are three teams that could give them trouble with the most problematic being the Portland Trailblazers. Pending the outcome of Portland’s game at Minnesota on Monday they could be tied with the Rockets heading into Tuesday action. Also of concern–the Utah Jazz and LA Clippers are both 2.5 games back of Houston and have both been playing exceptionally well. The Jazz have won 4 straight and 9 of 10 while the Clippers have won 8 of 10.

The Rockets have also been in excellent form and more significantly they’ve been consistently so. They’ll enter this matchup on a 16-4 SU/10-8-2 ATS run and while their road performance hasn’t been anything special this season (20-18 SU/15-22-1 ATS) they have improved of late winning 10 of their last 14 away from home going 7-6-1 ATS. More important in terms of this matchup–they’ve flat out dominated Sacramento this season. Houston has won and covered all three winning by margins of 20,26 and 11. The teams played at Houston on Saturday and while Sacramento put up a credible effort the Rockets managed to scrap out a cover as -9.5 home favorites. In the last meeting at Sacramento, Houston stopped the Kings winning 127-101 as -3.5 road chalk. The game wasn’t even as close as that lopsided final score indicates–the Rockets led by 31 at halftime.

No big secret that Houston’s James Harden has been a monster this year and the Kings have had no answer whatsoever to try and stop him. In Saturday’s meeting, Harden put up his fifth career 50 point triple double going for 50 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists. In February’s big road win Harden made 8 3 pointers and scored 36 points. He ‘took it easy’ on Sacramento in the first meeting this season scoring ‘only’ 34 points with 8 assists. In theory, it’s a good idea to look at the team that lost the first game of these ‘quick rematch’ situations. From a practical standpoint in this game, however, the situation and matchup is all Houston. Rockets roll.



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