Rockets v Trail Blazers
The Portland Trail Blazers will be going to the Toyota Center on Wednesday to take on the Houston Rockets in their NBA faceoff. Once again, the Trail Blazers will be tasked to prepare to take on a team that is currently on the slide. The Houston Rockets dropped three in a row, seven of their previous ten games. Despite continuing the lead in the league in 3-point attempts, their competence greatly dropped.
After a winning streak last month which saw them collected a total of eight victories in ten of their games, the Rockets’ setback is a great confusion not just for players but for their critics as well. The Blazers will be coming into the match fresh off a solid win against the Minnesota Timberwolves with Jusuf Nurkic fully dominating the game with 22 points, 11 rebounds, 4 blocks, 4 assists and 3 steals. However, prior to that, they dropped six of their last ten.
The last time these two teams met, the Blazers came out victorious by a wide margin. Houston Rockets, on the other hand, just came from a loss against the Dallas Mavericks with rookie Luka Doncic leading the win for the Mavs. Blazers’ Nurkic has been playing really well as of the moment so the Rockets should watch out for him. However, turnovers remain a problem for Portland, who turned the ball over at least 19 times against the Timberwolves. It remains to be seen whether they clean up their game in their match against the Houston Rockets.
Spurs v Suns
In previous years, the San Antonio Spurs has been one of the top defensive teams in the NBA league. So far this season, it’s been quite a struggle for the Spurs as proven by their battle to come out victorious in consecutive games. On Wednesday, the San Antonio Spurs will host the Phoenix Suns at the AT&T Center for their NBA faceoff.
The Spurs’ 110-96 success against the Utah Jazz allowed them consecutive victories for the first time ever since they bagged the four straight victories in an eight-day span in late October to early November. DeMar DeRozen and Rudy Gay both managed to score a massive 26 and 23 points respectively, and a career-high-tying 15 rebounds for the latter in order to secure the win for the Spurs. LaMarcus Aldridge also collected 20 points while Bryn Forbes and Marco Belinelli recorded a total of 15 and 10 for San Antonio separately.
On the other hand, the Phoenix suns will be heading to San Antonio for the second game of back-to-back brutal setbacks to when they lost a 123-119 home game to the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday. That defeat to the Clippers was the Suns’ ninth straight loss for the season. Deandre Ayton led the Suns with 20 points and 12 rebounds. Mikal Bridges and Richen Holmes, Josh Jackson, De’Anthony Melton, and Troy Daniels collected 19, 18, 13, and 10 points correspondingly.
The Phoenix Suns greatly struggled with consistency throughout the season and it looks like it might be a lost cause for the Suns. However, it’s not entirely impossible for them to bounce back considering their impressive form in previous years.
Clippers v Raptors
One of the top teams in the NBA league will be coming to the West Coast on Wednesday to take on the Los Angeles Clippers. The Toronto Raptors will take the court in Los Angeles in quite a confident mood. Meanwhile, the Clippers will be coming into this match fresh off an exhausting 123-119 overtime victory against the Phoenix Suns on Monday. That win slightly boosted their confidence following their crushing loss to the Miami Heat during the weekend.
Raptors’ Kawhi Leonard is on the spotlight this season. There has been a lot of hype around him lately and for good reason. He led the Raptors with an average of at least 26 points and 8 rebounds per game, and it seems to be progressing one game after the other following the injury that left him off the court for nearly a season-long. Meanwhile, Lou Williams has been quite a dependable scorer for the Clippers, but his availability for Wednesday’s game remains to be unknown due to a sore left hamstring that prevented him from finishing the game against the Suns.
The Raptors will come into this game without the help of UCLA product Norman Powell who has been suffering from a left shoulder misalignment, while Malachi Richardson is with a toe injury. For the Clippers, forward Luc Mbah a Moute will likely miss out Wednesday’s game due to a knee injury. Moreover, the Clippers are currently at the fourth place in the Western Conference standings while the Raptors are the leaders in the Eastern Conference table.
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