In what was one of the best match ups served to us this NBA Regular season, the Houston Rockets were able to overcome a 12 point first half deficit and defeat the world champion Cleveland Cavaliers at what I still like to refer to as The Summit in Houston (I guess now its the Toyota Center, riiiiiight). The game started off at what was a frantic yet heavily entertaining pace. The Houston Rockets free flowing 3pt happy offense (what do you call that spread 5 or spread 4 terminology?). Anyway, the Rockets spread them out as they have been doing all year attempting 45 3pt attempts in a game that saw almost 90 attempts between the two teams.
I’m not here to spit out box scores and stat lines right now, but what I do want you to know is that this game was well officiated, was very entertaining and spoke volumes about where the Houston Rockets stand among the leagues elites. Grant it, the Cavs were sans Kevin Love, but we all know they don’t really miss a beat without him in the line up, although it always helps to have another spread 4 who can rebound the basketball. That gets me to my next point. The one stat I will tell you about is how the Rockets out rebounded the Cavs 20 to 4!!! Yes those same Cavs that man handle my beloved Golden State Warriors on the boards had 4 count them, 1, 2, 3, 4 offensive rebounds. Initially this was in large part to the fact that the entire Houston squad adopted James Harden’s ‘OLAY’ defense in the first half. But The Beard more than made up for it with some nifty steals and locking down Kyrie on one play in-particular in the 3rd Quarter (or was it the 4th). So James Harden DOES play defense! This Houston squad is definitely one to watch as all season long their style of play has been the main question behind “Can this team really succeed in the playoffs?”, but if you take a look at the roster top to bottom with Clint Capella as a rim protector and Trevor Ariza and Patrick Beverly career lock down defenders… When James Harden is on it, grant it he’s got a ton of responsibilities – they are absolutely no slouch and a force to be reckoned with. Oh yes and before I forget, Nene played outstanding and looked quicker than ever as a big defending on the perimeter.
So in conclusion Houston has arrived, in fact if you asked me they have arrived since the beginning of the season and I think naysayers of Mike D’Antoni have to tip their hat to him regardless of this seasons outcome sans a first round exit in this extremely competitive western conference. When and if the Spurs and Warriors get healthy, whoever that 2 seed is will have a whale of a 2nd Round match up against this year’s Rockets.
On that note enjoy an hour less of sleep tonight as we all have to wonder, HOW IS DAY LIGHT SAVINGS STILL A THING!!!! Nation out (…zzz)