Our Saturday NBA playoffs preview highlights Game 3 between the Houston Rockets and Utah Jazz in the Western Conference Semi-finals, along with tips for all other matches being played today.
12:30 (AEST), Sat 5th May @ Vivint Smart Home Arena, Salt Lake City
History: Played 238: Jazz 125 V Rockets 113.
Last meeting: May 2, 2018: Jazz 116 d Rockets 108 at Toyota Center.
Final Thoughts: The top-seed Houston Rockets face a crucial Game 3 assignment in Salt Lake City after the Utah Jazz snatched an away upset to level the Western Conference semis.
The Rockets romped to a 110-96 victory in the series opener with James Harden going off for 41 points. But the Jazz – led by Australia’s own Joe Ingles (27 pts) and big man Rudy Gobert (15 pts, 14 reb) – squared the ledger with a 116-108 result in Game 2.
Houston were down defensively in the second clash, while Utah clamped down on Harden. Ricky Rubio will not return for the Jazz in Game 3.
The Rockets won both of their regular-season games at Utah by 11-point margins, but since the second of those encounters in late-February, the Jazz have gone 12-2 at home – including wins in their last seven at Vivint Smart Home Arena.
Houston are 29-14 on the road this season but have dropped three of their last five away games.
The Rockets go in as warm favourites to take a 2-1 lead but there may be some value in the Jazz at home with a five-point start. We’re tipping a tight win for Harden, CP3 and co.
|Golden State Warriors V New Orleans Pelicans||Total – Over 232.5 @ $1.91|