Rockets vs Spurs Pick, Prediction Today | Tuesday, March 12

Rockets vs Spurs Pick, Prediction Today | Tuesday, March 12 article feature image
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Alex Bierens de Haan/Getty Images. Pictured: Houston’s Jock Landale.

Rockets vs Spurs Pick for Tuesday, March 12

Tuesday, March 12
8:30 p.m.
League Pass
Rockets -3.5

Here's everything you need to know about Rockets vs. Spurs on Tuesday, March 12 — our expert prediction and betting picks for today.

After losing Alperen Sengun to injury on Sunday, the Houston Rockets will look to keep their winning ways going when they visit a much-improved San Antonio Spurs side on a back-to-back.

Can San Antonio continue to ride its defense to another encouraging performance, or will the Rockets prove to be resilient in the face of adversity?

Let's get to our Rockets vs. Spurs pick and prediction.


Rockets vs Spurs Prediction

Pick: Rockets -3.5 (-110)

Rockets Betting Outlook

Everything was going so well for the Rockets, who have turned their poor luck around with four wins in five games.

They'd just gotten Fred VanVleet back from injury and found their groove only to see Sengun exit Sunday's win in a wheelchair with a serious-looking injury.

Already down Cam Whitmore, Houston can now feel its positive momentum dissipating.

Still, there's much to be proud of here with the way that the team has defended over the last few weeks. Long the backbone of the Rockets this season, production on that side of the rock has returned with a splendid nine-game stretch that's been beaten by only five other teams.

A team that's led all sides in 3-point defense has remained consistent on that end while its rim defense has improved quite dramatically and risen even higher in the top 10.

While the Rockets may be down their starting center, Sengun's offensive impact has been far greater than his defensive impact this season, and they can still rely on Jabari Smith Jr. and Jock Landale to lock down the paint against one of the tallest basketball players in the world.

The tough part here for the Rockets will be the fact that they'd finally started to score the ball with ease over the last three games, and for the month of March, sit 1th with an encouraging 115.4 points scored per 100 possessions.

Houston shot just 62.1% at the rim — one of the worst marks in the league, according to Cleaning the Glass — but has shot it at a 66% clip since the calendar turned, so the loss of Sengun will certainly leave a mark.

With that, though, the Rockets are still shooting 39.4% from deep during that span, representing their biggest area of growth. They've taken a ton of shots at the rim, but perhaps without Sengun, they'll lean on what's worked for them best lately.

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Spurs Betting Outlook

We don't have San Antonio's injury report yet, but there's certainly an outside chance that Victor Wembanayama doesn't play here on the second night of a back-to-back given he just sat two games over the weekend with a minor ailment.

While that will be worth monitoring, this team did prove with a huge win over the Warriors on Saturday that its improvements go well beyond the No. 1 pick in last year's draft.

In the month of March, the Spurs are now ranked 14th on the defensive side of the ball in their five games, and over their last 10, they've now covered a whopping seven times.

Wins may still be hard to come by, but San Antonio has defended the 3-point line exceptionally well this month and ranks 12th at the rim, according to Cleaning the Glass.

While Wembanyama has a lot to do with this team's uptick in production on that end of the floor — he sits in the 98th percentile of Estimated Plus/Minus on defense, according to Dunks and Threes — the ability to slow teams on the perimeter has been just as imperative to this team's relative success.

The Spurs enter here with a bit of cold water thrown on them, however, coming off of a disheartening loss to the Warriors — a team they'd just beaten — and entering a spot on no rest where they're just 4-6 against the spread this season. Plus, they've gone just 11-14 as a home underdog.

That may not sound all that bad considering this is one of the worst teams in basketball, but the Spurs have managed to cover in 49.2% of their games this year.

The other big note to make here is that the Spurs, at least over the last couple of weeks, have been one of the best in the NBA at shooting the 3, which is a crazy thought considering they're ranked just 29th in that area on the season.

They've managed to do this against some great perimeter defenses, too, so the Rockets will have their hands full here.


Rockets vs Spurs Odds

Tuesday, March 12
8:30 p.m.
League Pass
Rockets Odds
SpreadOver/UnderMoneyline
-4
-112
222.5
-108o / -112u
-170
Spurs Odds
SpreadOver/UnderMoneyline
+4
-108
222.5
-108o / -112u
+142
Odds via DraftKings . Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.

Many times, the impact of a major injury isn't felt for at least a couple of games.

In Houston's case, I believe this team is playing well enough to rely on its depth here inside to slow Wembanyama, and theoretically, it should slow the Spurs' roll from outside with the way it's guarded the 3 all year.

While we haven't seen the Spurs take a step back yet in their production from deep, the Rockets have really shot it well out there in their last three games (better than 40%) and will really test the mettle of this defense.

Given the fatigue factor for San Antonio, which has been all too real this season, I think the better side should shine through here and come out with a somewhat decisive win.

Houston's ability to score without testing Wembanyama will work wonders here, and without Sengun, it will be inclined to take more outside shots.

On the other side, the Spurs may finally meet their match with a team that has proven to be exceptional defending inside — something that will grow even stronger with Landale taking the place of Sengun, who's been something of a defensive liability this season.

Pick: Rockets -3.5 (-110)

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