Houston Rockets (62-30) at Los Angeles Clippers (63-31)
|Date & Time||Thursday May 14, 2015, 10:30 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Los Angeles Clippers -8.5 -- Over/Under: 217.5
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The Los Angeles Clippers and the Houston Rockets battle in Game 6 at the Staples Center tonight.
The Rockets were able to stave off elimination with an impressive 124-103 rout over the Clippers in Game 5. Right from the tipoff it was clear that the Rockets were playing with the higher level of urgency and it paid off as they went into the halftime break with a healthy 63-48 lead before cruising in the second half. James Harden led the way with a triple-double of 26 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists, Trevor Ariza added 22 points and Dwight Howard had 20 points. As a team, the Rockets shot a healthy 54.1 percent from the field and won the rebound battle by 58-39 which really reminded us how good they can be when they get it all right.
As for the Clippers, the effort and urgency was definitely lacking and it just had them playing catch up for the entire game. Blake Griffin still had a monster game of 30 points and 16 rebounds while Chris Paul added 22 points and 10 assists, but the rest of the team struggled as the Clippers shot just 41.8 percent from the field and 9 of 35 from three-point range. As a result, the Clippers finished with their lowest point total of the series which puts them in danger of playing a Game 7 on the road if they falter again tonight.
In ATS trends, the Rockets are 7-1 ATS in their last eight games following a win of more than 10 points and 1-5 ATS in their last six road games, while the Clippers are 4-1 ATS in their last five games following a loss and 3-8 ATS in their last 11 home games.
Head to head, the Rockets are 1-4 ATS in the last five meetings overall and 1-5 ATS in the last six meetings in Los Angeles.
I really thought the Clippers would close out the series in Game 5, but the Rockets showed plenty of fight and came out with a comfortable victory. Momentum is a valuable commodity in sports so I'm expecting the Rockets to come out swinging with their season on the line, but I'm still sticking with the Clippers to pull away late and seal the series at home.