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Rockets vs. Jazz Game 5 Betting Preview: Can Utah Extend Series Again?

Credit:

Credit: Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Donavan Mitchell, James Harden

Game 5 Betting Odds: Utah Jazz at Houston Rockets

  • Spread: Rockets -8
  • Over/Under: 213
  • Time: 8 p.m. ET
  • TV Channel: TNT
  • Series Score: Rockets lead 3-1

>> All odds as of Tuesday night. Download The Action Network App to get real-time odds and live win probabilities on your bets.


The Jazz extended the series with Monday night’s win, but can they get it done again in Houston? Our analysts discuss.

Betting Trends to Know

The under is 6-1-1 in the first eight meetings between the Jazz and Rockets this season, going under the total by 9.4 points per game. Evan Abrams

If the Jazz put up a fight and cover the first-half spread, the Rockets are well equipped to close the door in the second half.

Since Dec. 1, the Rockets are 12-0-1 straight-up in the second half when either trailing or leading by five or fewer points at the end of the first half at home, including 9-4 against the second-half spread, covering by 4.9 points per game. Abrams

The Rockets have shot 35.2% from the field over the past two games. Under Mike D’Antoni, this is just the fifth time the Rockets have shot worse than 40% in consecutive games. They’re 3-1 straight-up and against-the-spread (ATS) in the past four, with their lone loss coming to the Warriors in the playoffs. Abrams

The Rockets were held to 91 points in their Game 4 loss. Since Mike D’Antoni took over in 2016-17, Houston has averaged 113.9 points per game. One might expect the Rockets to bounce back after a low-scoring output.

Usually they do, but not as much as you might think. In the past three seasons, the Rockets have scored fewer than 100 points in 31 games. In their next matchup, they have averaged 105.8 PPG, eight points below the team’s average. They went 14-17 ATS in those. John Ewing


Locky: Can Utah Extend the Series?


I have not been particularly involved in this series, and I actually have a couple bets (over 5.5 games in series, Utah +2.5 games) that both need Utah to win Game 5 outright, so I don’t think I’m getting involved any more here in the single-game markets.

What I will say is that I do believe playing Houston over and over again becomes more advantageous for the opponent with each passing game. Houston’s system and James Harden’s skill set are nearly impossible to simulate in a one-off, regular-season type of situation; the Rockets are so good and so different from what everyone else is doing. Really, they’re just so damn good at what they do. But they also may really wish they ended this series in 4.

There is a whole lot of repetition involved in playing Houston. You are watching the same thing over and over. It almost seems boring that way, no matter how ruthlessly effective it can be at times. And although it can be very tough to stop defensively, the more you play against it, the more you learn how it can be limited.

No team should really have a better idea of how to do that than Utah, between last season and this season in the playoffs. And no team is really better equipped defensively, with Royce O’Neale guarding James Harden and Rudy Gobert in the paint.

The question is, can anyone for Utah score efficiently? Donovan Mitchell takes plenty of shots but has been brutal to watch in some of these quarters. No other player has consistently made shots the entire series (in Game 4, it was the emergence of Jae Crowder and to a lesser extent Ricky Rubio, but are those reliable players on the road?)

It can be easy to watch Games 3 and 4 and think, “well, yeah, but that was the Jazz at home; they didn’t do that in Houston”… but I think what’s actually happening is much more about the series continuing along and a growing sense of familiarity, rather than where the games are actually played.

I think the Jazz are getting more and more comfortable with what’s happening on the court, and if they hit ANY shots at all in Game 3, they win that as well. The Jazz had great road splits in the second half of the season, and I think what they’ve accomplished and their understanding of Houston can travel.

I like them a little at this number of +8, but since I have to cheer for them to win outright anyway I don’t think I’ll be getting involved. — Ken Barkley


Mears: How I’m Betting Game 5

The Jazz had easily their best game of the series in Game 4. They held Houston to a low 97.8 Offensive Rating and scored 116.3 points/100 on their end of the floor. The question is whether that performance is sustainable or merely a blip on the way to summer break.

The answer is that it was mixed. The Jazz absolutely dominated inside, holding the Rockets to 47.6% shooting (16th percentile) at the rim. Some of those were just the Rockets missing bunnies:

But others were better rim protection from their bigs, especially Rudy Gobert:

Further, the Jazz shot 43% at the rim (81st percentile) and absolutely dominated the glass, grabbing 40% of their misses (97th percentile). That’s definitely a formula for success.

But there were other areas that seem unsustainable. They got a great game from Jae Crowder, who has been awful this series and is having a very down shooting season. He went 8-of-13 from the field, and even Royce O’Neale chipped in with two 3-pointers. The Jazz weren’t great offensively, but their role players at home were good enough to get by with the defense stepping up.

And there’s still the math problem. The Rockets have taken a ton more 3-pointers than the Jazz this series, and in Game 3 they went 2-of-9 from the corner. Chris Paul had a bad shooting game. Those should reverse in Game 5, enough to overcome even more struggles at the rim.

The issue, of course, is that this game is at Rockets -8, which I think is a pretty solid line. There are some compelling trends about the under and the Rockets in the second half, but for the full-game lines, I think I’ll be staying away from this one. If anything, I may parlay the Rockets and Warriors moneylines to get slightly better odds on Houston winning this game. — Bryan Mears


Editor’s note: The opinions on this game are from the individual writers and are based on their research, analysis and perspective. They are independent of, and may not always match with, the algorithm-driven Best Bets from Sports Insights.

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