In the previous meeting between the two teams, the New York Knicks had a 121-99 blowout victory over the Houston Rockets. Julius Randle was the best performer in the game, scoring 22 points and claiming nine boards.
Fixture - New York Knicks vs Houston Rockets | 2020-21 NBA Season.
Date & Time - Sunday, May 2nd; 8:00 PM ET (Monday, May 3rd; 5:30 AM IST).
Venue - Toyota Center, Houston, TX.
New York Knicks Preview
The New York Knicks have been unstoppable in the last few weeks, winning ten of their last 11 games. They are seeded fourth in the Eastern Conference and have a 35-28 season record.
In their last game, the New York Knicks routed the Chicago Bulls 113-94. Julius Randle continued his terrific run, scoring 32 points, while RJ Barrett played a solid cameo, tallying 22 points.
The Knicks put on an impeccable display at the defensive end, registering ten steals and nine blocks. They were very sharp at the offensive end as well, committing only four turnovers all game.
Key Player - Julius Randle
Julius Randle has been the driving force for the rejuvenated New York Knicks this season.
He has been their most influential player in terms of production and a key player for their postseason hopes. Randle is averaging 30.8 points, 8.5 rebounds and 5.2 assists per contest in his last ten appearances.
Against an in-form Houston Rockets frontcourt, Randle will need to be at his best to take his team over the line.
Point Guard - Elfrid Payton l Shooting Guard - RJ Barrett l Small Forward - Reggie Bullock l Power Forward - Julius Randle l Center - Nerlens Noel.
Houston Rockets Preview
The Houston Rockets' poor run has continued, thanks to their injury woes. They are last in the Western Conference standings and have the worst overall record in the league, at 16-48.
In their last game, the Houston Rockets lost to the Golden State Warriors 87-113. Kevin Porter Jr. and Kenyon Martin Jr. scored 16 points apiece, but the Rockets shot just 36% from the field.
Christian Wood and Kelly Olynyk had an off-night, as the duo combined for only 18 points on the night. Considering the injuries in their roster, it was always going to be an uphill task for them to beat the Warriors.
Key Player - Kelly Olynyk
Kelly Olynyk has been in terrific form since joining the Houston Rockets on the trade deadline day. He has improved with each passing game and will look to produce a better outing after an underwhelming one in his last match.
Olynyk was on a hot-scoring streak before the Warriors game, scoring 20 or more points in four consecutive games. If the Houston Rockets are to have any chance of winning this game, Olynyk will have to be key at both ends of the floor.
He will have his task cut out, though against Julius Randle, the New York Knicks' talisman.
However, if he finds a way to keep Randle quiet, the Houston Rockets would fancy their chances of an upset.
Point Guard - Kevin Porter Jr. l Shooting Guard - Armoni Brooks l Small Forward - Jae'Sean Tate l Power Forward - Kelly Olynyk l Center - Christian Wood.
Knicks vs Rockets Prediction
The New York Knicks are the overwhelming favorites in this game, owing to their better recent form and superior squad depth.
However, the Rockets can be an unpredictable team, as was evident in their recent win over the Bucks. That is something Tom Thibodeau's men should be mindful of heading into this contest.
Where to watch the Knicks vs Rockets game?
The game between the New York Knicks and the Houston Rockets will be televised locally on AT&T Sportsnet - Southwest and MSG. The match can also be live-streamed with an NBA League Pass.