Tune-In Tidbits: TNT Tuesday, Feb. 9, 2021
Get ready for Tuesday's TNT doubleheader with five key stats to know about each matchup.
Brian Martin, for NBA.com
Get ready for Tuesday’s TNT doubleheader with five key stats to know about each matchup.
Rockets (11-12) at Pelicans (10-12)
• Houston won the first meeting 126-112 on Jan. 30 behind Christian Wood’s 27 points. Wood, who leads the Rockets with 22.0 ppg and 10.2 rpg, is currently sidelined with an ankle injury, which brings more minutes for DeMarcus Cousins. In the six games Wood has missed, Cousins is averaging 13.7 ppg, 12.8 rpg in 29 mpg; In 14 games with Wood in the lineup, Cousins is averaging 6.8 ppg, 5.1 rpg in 14.8 mpg.
• Zion Williamson had 26 points, seven rebounds and four assists in first game vs. Rockets. P.J. Tucker was the primary defender on Zion for 4:56 (49.4% of Zion’s offensive matchup time). Zion scored just six points on 3-4 shooting against Tucker.
• The Pelicans lead the NBA in second-chance points with 15.5 per game as they rank fourth in offensive rebound percentage (29.8%). The Rockets allow the 10th-highest offensive rebound percentage (27.6%) and allow 12.9 second-chance points per game.
• The Rockets (14.3) and Pelicans (11.4) rank seventh and 24th, respectively, in 3-pointers made per game. For both teams the key number for 3-pointers made is 12. The Rockets are 10-3 when making more than 12 3-pointers and 1-9 when making 12 or fewer. The Pelicans are 8-1 when making more than 12 3-pointers and 2-11 when making 12 or fewer.
• The Pelicans enter Tuesday riding a three-game win streak – their first of this season and nearly a year to the day since the last time they won three straight from Feb. 6-11, 2020. During the streak, the Pelicans are shooting 46.2% on 3-pointers as a team, with Brandon Ingram (52.6% on 6.3 attempts), Lonzo Ball (59.1% on 7.3 attempts), Eric Bledsoe (50% on 5.2 attempts) and JJ Redick (70% on 3.3 attempts) all shooting 50% or better from 3-point range.
Celtics (12-10) at Jazz (19-5)
• The Celtics continue to be without Marcus Smart as he recovers from a calf strain. Smart leads the Celtics in assists (6.1 apg, 19th in NBA), steals (1.8 apg, 5th), deflections (3.2 spg, 9th) and loose balls recovered (1.3 per game, 10th). In the first four games without Smart, Boston’s defensive rating has dropped from 108.9 (11th) to 114.4 (15th) and their steals per game dropped from 9.1 (3rd) to 6.5 (16th).
• Rudy Gobert is tied for seventh in rim protection, holding opponents to 51.3% at the basket while he’s defending. Daniel Theis (54.2% allowed) ranks 13th among the 30 players that defend at least five shots at the basket per game.
• Mike Conley leads the NBA in plus/minus with the Jazz outscoring opponents by 265 points in his 674 minutes on the court so far this season. The next closest player is the Lakers’ LeBron James at 218. Conley’s average point differential (11.5) is on pace to be the highest by any player since Stephen Curry (12.8) and Kevin Durant (11.5) for the Warriors in 2016-17.
• Utah enters Tuesday averaging a league-high 17.0 3-pointers made per game and ranks second in 3-point percentage at 40.3%. The Jazz will face a Celtics defense that allows just 11.6 3-pointers made per game (sixth-lowest) on 36.0% shooting (seventh-lowest).
• The Jazz average 21.9 wide open 3-point attempts per game (third-highest in league) and shoot 43.5% on those shots (second-highest in league). Conversely, Boston averages 14.1 wide open 3-point attempts per game (26th in league) and shoots 37.2% on those shots (27th in league).