Rockets vs Blazers – Game 3 Picks

Houston Rockets vs. Portland Trail Blazers

Game 3

Friday 10:30 pm EST

April 25, 2014

Line: Portland Trail Blazers -2.5

Houston, we have a problem.

Aside from trailing 2-0 in the best-of-seven series, the Rockets biggest issues have been their inability to contain LaMarcus Aldridge and the play of their superstars, Dwight Howard and James Harden.

After the Rockets Game 1 loss, Howard made it clear that he wanted the ball in Game 2. Scoring 25 points in the first half, Howard managed just seven points in the second half. Harden’s Game 2 performance wasn’t much better. Missing 20 shots in Game 1, he promised a better performance in Game 2, but finished with 18 points on 6 of 19 shooting.

If the Rockets two stars are going to continue to struggle offensively, the three-time Defensive Player of the year must play like a force to be reckoned with. So far that has not been the case. Allowing a combined 234 points in the first two games, Howard has played more like “Lois Lane” than of the superhero that he claims to be.

Allowing 108.2 points in their last five games, which are six points more than the league average, the Rockets have also lost five of their last six games when allowing 100 or more points. Losing is starting to become a common theme for the Rockets and especially, for Howard, losing his last seven and 11 of 13 playoff games.

As Howard and his teammates head to Portland looking to save their season, this series may end quicker than most people believe. Having won seven straight and 11 of 12 dating back to the regular season, the Rockets are heading for a crash landing. Aldridge, who played his college basketball at the University of Texas, was superb in his return home to Texas. On the shoulders of Aldridge, Portland’s won two road games to start a playoff series for only the second time in franchise history. The last time this happened was when they took the first two against the Lakers in the 1977 Western Conference finals. The year they won the NBA championship.

If there’s any hope of the Rockets saving their season, it starts and ends with stopping Aldridge. Something the Rockets will be unable to do.

My Pick: Portland -2.5

April 25, 2014 by : Posted in Picks and Predictions No Comments
Adam Rosen

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Adam Rosen is a seasoned sports writer with special interests in Pro Football and Basketball. He has been picking sports games against the spread for years, and has posted a 56% win rate over his last 75 predictions.

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