Houston Rockets vs New Orleans Pelicans Preview

By Michael Ma

Dec 28, 2013; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Rockets power forward Dwight Howard (12) drives the ball around New Orleans Pelicans power forward Ryan Anderson (33) during the third quarter at Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

The Houston Rockets visit New Orleans for the first time since the franchise changed it’s name to the Pelicans. Here are the keys to a win Wednesday night.

Injury Update

Patrick Beverley will sit out once again, as will Omer Asik. Greg Smith, who missed Monday’s game in Boston, is listed as questionable as he re-injured his right knee. On the other hand, the Pelicans will be missing key pieces as well: Ryan Anderson is out for an extended period of time, while Jrue Holiday will not suit up either, and Tyreke Evans is listed as day-to-day.

Beyond The Arc

The Pelicans rank 7th worst in the NBA in 3-pointers allowed per game, at 8.3 makes. The Rockets were also able to find their stroke from the 3-point line Monday night in Boston, shooting 42 percent(8 for 19). Needless to say, the outside shot must fall.

Rebound, Rebound, Rebound

Rebounding has been an issue, mainly when Dwight Howard is not in the game, as the Rockets have allowed a total of 43 offensive rebounds in the past 2 games. The Pelicans are 4th in the NBA in offensive rebounds per game at 12.83, and with Anthony Davis lurking around the paint all night, boxing out is a must.