Can Leonard and George Start Clicking Against Rockets?
The Houston Rockets and the Los Angeles Clippers battle on Friday at Staples Center in Los Angles. Kawhi Leonard and Paul George were part of a victory in their first time together on the court last time out. Can they start clicking more tonight against the Rockets?
TV: 10:30 p.m. ET, ESPN, Prime Ticket (Los Angeles); LINE: Clippers -5.5; O/U: 226
The duo looks for another win on Friday against the Rockets. Leonard, who had a bruised knee, returned from a three-game absence and George, who was recovering from off-season shoulder surgeries, played together for the first time. George played his fourth game of the season in Wednesday’s 107-104 overtime win over the Boston Celtics.
Leonard scored 17 points in the victory, but was just 7-of-20 shooting. George racked up 25 points and eight assists in the successful first matchup together. “The fact of the matter is we are going to have growing pains, and I think the most positive thing is we understood that,” George told reporters afterward. “Nobody was pointing fingers or dropping their heads in huddles. … At no point was this team ever dysfunctional.”
The Rockets had an eight-game winning streak snapped with Wednesday’s 105-95 loss. It was their lowest scoring output of the season. James Harden scored 27 in the game. That snapped a streak of at least 36 in eight straight games. It seems as he goes the Rockets go. Harden torched the Clippers for 47 in a 102-93 home win over Nov. 13th.
This, That, and a Dart Throw
The Rockets are 11-4 on the season. Harden only took 16 shots against Denver and Houston was just 12-of-38 from 3-point rang. Harden hoisted 41 shots against Minnesota on Saturday to give you a visual. He shot down the notion that the Nuggets had successfully blanketed the attack. “They just double-teamed every possession,” Harden told reporters. “They got lucky. They got away with one. We didn’t execute how we needed to.” Center Clint Capela collected 21 rebounds and has racked up 20 or more in five straight games. That is the best streak in the NBA since Ben Wallace, of the Pistons, also had five straight in March of 2003.
The Clippers are 10-5 on the season. While Leonard and George were drawing double teams, Lou Williams rang up 27 points and scored at will. Patrick Beverley had an all-around game with a career-best 16 rebounds to go along with 14 points and seven assists. Leonard and George each played 37 minutes against Boston. Tonight their fitness could be tested by the fast-paced Rockets as they learn to play with one another. “It’s pretty much just finding each other’s spots and knowing the plays,” Leonard said of potential improvement. “It’s still tough. We are both kind of on a minute restriction – hard to get into a flow. But just knowing plays and each other’s spots and the language on the defensive end. Repetition is what we need right now.”
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The Dart Throw: Clippers 114, Rockets 106
Rockets vs Clippers Trends
- Trend Under is 5-1 in Clippers last 6 games as a favorite of 5.0-10.5. Hit % 83.30% (6) O/U 1|5 Push 0 W/L
- Over is 39-18-2 in Clippers last 59 games as an underdog of 11.0 or greater. 68.40% (59) 39|18 2
- Under is 39-18-2 in Clippers last 59 games as a favorite of 11.0 or greater. 68.40% (59) 18|39 2
- Under is 5-2 in Clippers last 7 games as an underdog of 0.5-4.5. 71.40% (7) 2|5 0
- Trend Under is 4-1 in Rockets last 5 games as a favorite of 5.0-10.5. Hit % 80.00% (5) O/U 1|5 Push 0 W/L
- Over is 3-0-1 in Rockets last 4 games as a favorite of 11.0 or greater. 100.00% (4) 18|39 2
- Under is 38-16-1 in Rockets last 55 games as an underdog of 0.5-4.5. 70.40% (55) 2|5 0
- Under is 36-14-1 in Rockets last 51 games as a road underdog of 0.5-4.5. 72.00% (51) 14|36 1
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Houston home to Dallas Sunday, November 24
Los Angeles home to New Orleans Sunday, November 24
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