National Basketball Association
New Orleans at Houston
When: 8:00 PM ET, Saturday, March 24, 2018
Where: Toyota Center, Houston, Texas

The New Orleans Pelicans aren't making it look easy, but they continue to find the win column. The Pelicans are in for a challenge when they try to push their winning streak to five straight on Saturday against the host Houston Rockets, who are winners of seven straight and own the best record in the NBA.

Anthony Davis' late MVP push is keeping New Orleans in the top eight of the Western Conference, and it outlasted the Los Angeles Lakers 128-125 on Thursday to head into play on Friday in the No. 4 spot, 3 1/2 games in front of the ninth-place Denver Nuggets. "It feels good, but we can celebrate tonight," Pelicans guard Jrue Holiday told reporters after the win. "We got a still tough schedule to go. Pretty sure we moved up (in the standings), but we got, what, nine games left. We've got to keep on winning games and get to where we want to get so that we can have some advantage in the playoffs." The Rockets are inching toward locking up the No. 1 spot in the West and are winners of 24 of their last 25 after MVP frontrunner James Harden scored 10 of his 21 points in overtime of a 100-96 win over Detroit on Thursday. Houston will play seven of its final 10 games at home, where it owns a 28-6 record.

TV: 8 p.m. ET, NBATV, FS New Orleans, AT&T SportsNet Southwest (Houston)

ABOUT THE PELICANS (43-30): New Orleans is thriving through a rough stretch of schedule that had it play five games in six days and had enough energy left on Thursday to outscore the Lakers 31-17 in the fourth quarter. "Mentally tough. Mentally tough," Davis told reporters. "Just had to grind it out. It was one of those games where you got a grind out a team who was making a lot of shots, playing very well. Five (games) in six (nights), so it was just one of them games we just tried to fight through the fatigue -- physically and mentally -- and just try to pull this one out." The Pelicans, who began that stretch with a 107-101 home loss to Houston last Saturday, don't get any breaks with games against Portland, Cleveland and Oklahoma City next week.

ABOUT THE ROCKETS (58-14): Harden struggled to 2-of-16 from the floor in regulation on Thursday before finding his stroke in overtime. "It's always tough getting home from a long road trip, but we found a way to win," Harden told reporters. "Defensively we were pretty active. They only had 96 points, which is good in overtime. Offensively, we couldn't get it going. It's going to be like that sometimes, so, find ways to win games." Harden went 0-of-8 from 3-point range in the win, marking the first time this season that he failed to make at least one 3-point attempt.


1. The Rockets will reportedly release PF Brandan Wright, who played in only one game for the team after being bought out by Memphis.

2. New Orleans SF E'Twaun Moore is 16-of-25 from the floor over the last two games.

3. Houston took three of the last four in the series, including a 130-123 home win on Dec. 11.

PREDICTION: Rockets 122, Pelicans 119
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div Conf
New Orleans 43-30 W4 22-15 21-15 3-3 40-27 7-6 22-22
Houston 58-14 W7 28-6 30-8 1-0 57-14 11-3 37-8
Last Meeting
New Orleans Houston
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
3/17/18 HOU 107 NO 101 101 40 49.4 107 46 41.9
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
New Orleans A. Davis 26 61.1 4
Houston J. Harden 32 39.3 6
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
New Orleans A. Davis 13 1 12
Houston C. Capela 11 5 6
Assists Player  
New Orleans J. Holiday 8
Houston J. Harden 8
Points Player Total FG% FTM
New Orleans A. Davis 1931 53.4 467
Houston J. Harden 2068 44.4 590
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
New Orleans A. Davis 763 175 588
Houston C. Capela 756 227 529
Assists Player  
New Orleans R. Rondo 467
Houston J. Harden 585
Quickchart Matchup
New Orleans New Orleans Off vs  Houston Houston Defense
New Orleans Off vs Houston - Points For 111.7 Points For
New Orleans Off vs Houston - Points Against 104.7 Points Against
New Orleans - FG% 48.3 FG%
Houston - FG% 46.5 FG%
New Orleans - Reb 44.0 Reb
Houston - Reb 41.6 Reb
Houston Houston Off vs  New Orleans New Orleans Defense
Houston Off vs New Orleans - Points For 113.5 Points For
Houston Off vs New Orleans - Points Against 111.0 Points Against
Houston - FG% 46.2 FG%
New Orleans - FG% 45.5 FG%
Houston - Reb 43.5 Reb
New Orleans - Reb 45.4 Reb