Jeremy Lin and the Houston Rockets will try to thwart Chris Paul and the Los Angeles Clippers efforts to win the their 50th game of the season Saturday night at the Toyota Center.
The Clippers had their first chance to win 50 games in a single season in franchise history Friday against the San Antonio Spurs, but fell just short in a 104-102 loss thanks to Tim Duncan’s season-high 34 points and last second jumper.
Paul totaled 12 assists with 14 points, and forward Blake Griffin scored a team-high 14 points and grabbed eight rebounds.
Jamal Crawford continued his campaign for Sixth Man of the Year honors with 16 points, but the L.A. couldn’t match Duncan and Tony Parker’s 24 points and eight assists.
The Rockets are firmly entrenched in the bottom half of the Western Conference playoff standings at No. 7, but have suffered two straight losses.
Lin and guard James Harden combined for 15 points and each shot 3-for-9 from the floor in Houston’s 103-94 loss to the Memphis Grizzlies Friday.
Forwards Chandler Parsons and Donatas Motiejunas both scored 16 points, but Houston came out flat in the second half, while connecting on nine of their 27 3-point attempts.
In the last four contests, Lin has hit a bit of a funk after ripping off 10 straight double-digit scoring games, with Houston going 6-4 during that stretch.
The game tips-off at 8 p.m. Eastern time, and you can watch a live online stream by purchasing NBA League Pass Broadband here.
Betting Odds: Houston is favored by 1.5 points.
Over/Under: 206 points
Prediction: Clippers frontcourt of Griffin and DeAndre Jordan will overwhelm Houston, and Paul gives Harden and Lin a rough defensive matchup. The Rockets will have to keep up in the first half, come out strong in the third, and pick their three-point shots better. Still, L.A. should capture their franchise best 50th win.
Predicted Score: Los Angeles 101, Houston 97