Portland Trail Blazers (12-29) vs. Houston Rockets (20-21)
Portland Trail Blazers vs. Houston Rockets 1/24/24 – In a fascinating mid-season clash, the struggling Portland Trail Blazers will face off against the moderately better Houston Rockets on Wednesday. The Blazers, sitting at a disappointing 12-29, are desperate to turn their season around, while the Rockets hover around the .500 mark with a 20-21 record. Fans and bettors alike are eyeing this matchup for insights and NBA top picks, given the contrasting fortunes of these teams this season.
The Trail Blazers have struggled with injuries and inconsistency en route to an NBA-worst 12-29 record so far. The one bright spot has been offseason acquisition Jerami Grant, who leads the team at 21.8 points per contest. However, Portland has too many holes to compete on most nights. They rank bottom-five in both offensive and defensive rating. Still, the Trail Blazers have shown signs of life lately – winning two of their last five games.
Meanwhile, the Rockets have been surprisingly frisky this season behind the rapid development of youngsters Jalen Green and Alperen Sengun. Houston is 7-3 across its last 10 games, flashing two-way potential. The Rockets boast a middle-of-the-pack offense and defense, with the third fastest pace in basketball. If Green and Sengun continue ascending, Houston could make this a closer game than the records suggest.
Portland Trail Blazers vs. Houston Rockets 1/24/24 Game Info
|Wednesday, January 24, 2024, at 8:00 PM ET
|Space City Home Network
|NBA League Pass
Jerami Grant (SF) vs. Alperen Sengun (C)
Jerami Grant has firmly established himself as a leading scoring threat since coming over from Detroit. He’s reaching career-high marks in points (21.8), assists (2.4), blocks (0.7) and three-point shooting (36%). Grant can get buckets from all three levels with the ball in his hands. He’ll look to carry the load as Portland’s top offensive option. However, his supporting cast has let him down far too often this season.
Alperen Sengun has flashed immense potential as a playmaking center in year two. The Turkish big man leads the Rockets with 9.1 rebounds while also dishing out 4.9 assists per game. He has soft touch and footwork around the rim along with promising defensive upside given his size and length. Sengün forms a lethal pick-and-roll combo with Green. If he can consistently knock down jumpers, Alperen could develop into a franchise cornerstone for Houston.
This matchup will pit Sengün against one of the craftiest isolation scorers in Grant. Alperen must contain Jerami in the post while also tracking him along the perimeter. On the other end, Grant lacks the size to handle Sengun’s strength down low. Expect plenty of highlight sequences between these talented forwards.
NBA Odds/Point Spread: TBD, Total Odds: TBD
The betting odds for this game are not yet available, making it challenging to provide specific insights or recommendations. However, given the Rockets’ slightly better record and home advantage, they could emerge as favorites once the odds are announced.
Portland Trail Blazers Betting Trends
The Portland Trail Blazers have been a mixed bag in recent outings, going 2-3 straight up in their last five contests. However, they have shown more consistency against the spread, covering in three of their previous five matchups. For the season, Portland has been respectable when getting points on the road, covering the spread in 10 of their 22 away contests. With a big spread in this matchup against the Rockets, the Trail Blazers could continue their recent success against the number.
Houston Rockets Betting Trends
Despite some improved play lately with a 7-3 record in their last 10 games, the Houston Rockets have surprisingly struggled against the spread recently. They have failed to cover in their past five straight matchups. On the year, Houston has also battled covering numbers on their home court, cashing tickets for bettors in just 12 of their 22 games at Toyota Center. Given the Rockets’ poor performances against the spread at home and their failure to cover five matchups in a row, backing them to cover a big number could be risky.
Portland Trail Blazers vs. Houston Rockets 1/24/24 Betting Picks
Based on the analysis and trends, this game appears to be a close contest. The Blazers, despite their poor record, have shown sparks of potential, especially in Jerami Grant’s performance. On the other hand, the Rockets, led by Sengun, have been more consistent offensively but have faltered against the spread.
In terms of betting, the smart pick might lean towards the Rockets, primarily due to their home advantage and slightly superior offensive stats. However, the Blazers could surprise, particularly if Grant has an exceptional night. Prop bets focusing on individual performances, such as points scored by Grant or Sengun, could be interesting. The over/under will hinge on the teams’ recent scoring trends, with the Rockets favoring higher totals. The scoreline is in favor of Houston, making them the top premium choices for this matchup.
Free Pick and Prediction: Houston Rockets 108, Portland Trail Blazers 104.