Saturday, January 23, 2021

The Rockets Strike Back, Even Series

Golden State Warriors 105  - 127 Houston Rockets


The Rockets strike back with their game two victory over the Warriors. Tying the series at 1 apiece as the series shifts to The Bay for games 3 and 4. Curry doesn’t quite look himself, as PJ Tucker comes up big for Houston.

Golden Concerns

The Splash Brothers uncharacteristically shot terrible from behind the arc. Combining for a 3 for 12 night. Curry is the real question mark. Going 4 for 13 from deep to start the series, has people wondering if Curry isn’t fully back from the knee injury that made him miss the beginning of the postseason. Curry has told reporters that he is fine and feels healthy, but you do have to question his health as he had a laundry list of injuries since coming in the league.

Kevin Durant was the lone offensive bright spot for the Warriors as he scored 38 points on 13-22 shooting. Curry chipped in 16, but no other Warrior scored double figures. Trailing for most the game, they just never seemed to get out of the gate, as the Rockets just kept pouring it on. In rout to a 22 point loss for Golden State.

If they are going to have any chance of getting to another Finals, they better ratchet it up defensively. Curry had his ankles broken twice by Chris Paul last night, and no one was closing out. Kerr better use the off day to build up a better defensive scheme, because letting the Rockets score 120 ever night is an easy way to ensure you won’t be advancing.

Rockets Role Players

As much credit as Chris Paul and James Harden will get, it’s hard to remember that there are other really talented guys on this roster. I don’t think Golden State will forget anymore. PJ Tucker, Eric Bledsoe and Trevor Ariza were critical in the game two victory. Tucker scored 22 points on 8 of 9 shooting (5 of 6 from deep). Bledsoe had 27 going 6-9 from 3 and Ariza chipped in 19 on an efficient 7 for 9. In all 5 Rockets scored in double figures led by Bledsoe and Harden with 27 a piece.

With the game never in jeopardy has the Rockets made everything they threw up. Leading by 14 at half after a 38 point second corner. The Rockets just keep firing away from deep, scoring 31 and 32 points in the 3rd and 4th quarter respectively. It was enough to stave off any hope for the Warriors.

As much as this victory feels good, it doesn’t mean squat if they go to San Francisco and drop both games. They need to pull one out on the road. However, D’Antoni might have to start spreading out minutes as depth could eventually become a concern with the fatigue these fast paced games.

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