The Suns hold a record of 7-5 both overall and against the spread. Phoenix is coming off a loss to the Memphis Grizzlies.
Like the Suns, the Rockets have identical overall and against the spread records, standing at 4-8. In the Rockets’ most recent game, they fell to the Chicago Bulls in a tight contest.
Here’s how sportsbooks have set the opening Suns-Rockets odds.
NBA Odds: Suns-Rockets Odds
Phoenix Suns -5.5 (-117)
Houston Rockets +5.5 (-103)
Over 219.5 Points (-107)
Under 219.5 Points (-113)
Why The Suns Could Cover The Spread
After a hot start to the season, the Suns have dropped three out of their last four contests.
In all three losses, Phoenix couldn’t get their offense going. They averaged just over 105 points in games against the Detroit Pistons, Washington Wizards, and Grizzlies.
The key to victory for Phoenix tonight will be taking care of the ball and getting easy buckets in the paint.
The Suns record the third least turnovers per game as a team with Chris Paul as their floor general. Keeping the turnovers low and the pace slow gives the Suns a massive advantage over the high-octane Rockets.
Phoenix’s offense has been slow, but they shoot the ball well. The Suns rank towards the bottom of the league in total points scored, but they have the fourth-highest field goal percentage in the NBA. As long as they don’t give away possessions, Phoenix will be in great shape.
Against Houston, the Suns should be able to find some easy points as well. The Rockets allow the third most offensive rebounds in the league, playing right into the hands of Deandre Ayton. The Suns big man could have a big game tonight against a defense that struggles to rebound the ball.
Look for Paul to slow the game down, generate good looks for his shooters, and grind away at a Rockets defense that doesn’t have the personnel to lock up all the Suns’ scorers.
Why The Rockets Could Cover The Spread
For the Rockets to win this game, they’ll need to run the Suns out of the building.
Phoenix is comfortable running half-court set after half-court set, while the Rockets prefer to run the floor. Houston plays at the seventh highest pace in the league, far surpassing the Sun’s crawl.
Rockets newcomer Victor Oladipo will be key in this effort. The former Pacers star had a great debut for Houston, scoring 32 points and dishing out nine assists. He’ll come out firing in the absence of John Wall tonight.
Houston will focus on pressuring Phoenix and getting turnovers while quickening the pace. If the Rockets can make this a track meet and force Phoenix out of their comfort zone, we could see an upset.
Working in Houston’s favor is the fact that the Suns offense has been cold lately. If Phoenix struggled to score against the Wizards, a Houston defense that has been slightly better than average could keep the Suns off the board as well.
Final Suns-Rockets Prediction & Pick
Without Wall to amp up the pace needed here to topple the Suns, I’ll take Phoenix to win in grind-it-out fashion. Paul and Booker should create enough quality looks to snap out of an offensive funk, and the Rockets offense will be too limited to keep up with them. Phoenix should snap their losing streak tonight against a short-handed Houston squad.
FINAL SCORE PREDICTION: PHX 112, HOU 104