With about a third of this lockout-shortened season already gone, the Rockets record stands at 14-11 and they currently sit at the 7 spot in the West. However, that doesn’t say much about how the Rockets have been playing lately. After last night’s big road win in the Mile High City, only the 4th road victory in 12 attempts, the Rockets are now 12-5 in their last 17 games which has made up for the pretty bad 2-6 start to the season. The last few games though have been a bit unorthodox. It seemed the Rockets had found their groove with Lowry and Martin playing well, but it’s the NBA and everybody goes through a slump. Luckily, the Rockets bench, which had been playing pretty lackluster, suddenly found a spark in Chase Budinger (4 three’s last night, including this buzzer-beater) and has played vital roles in the last couple of victories. The Rox second unit scored 42 big points last night, which is huge when only 2 of your starting 5 score in double figures. Kevin Martin continued his struggles from the field going 1-9 for 8 points in the game (6 came from FTs), while Lowry seemed to find his shooting touch again going for 20 points, including 5-6 from deep.
Luis Scola (25pts, 8rbs) also seemed just fine yesterday after getting stomped on by Kevin Love the other night. Kevin Love has been suspended 2 games for this incident. You have to wonder if that was Love’s retaliation to Scola throwing the ball off what Clyde Drexler called Kevin Love’s “Love Stomach” last week. Nonetheless, a dirty play by Love, and rightly punished.
The Rockets will continue their road trip with a back-to-back starting Wednesday in Portland and Thursday in Phoenix. They then get a much needed 2 nights off before taking on the Warriors on Sunday.
Interesting side note: Samuel Dalembert started yesterday’s game, played 7 minutes, and then never returned. There has been no news on any injury; it was simply a coach’s decision. I’m thinking maybe some rest against a fast-paced Nuggets team that had both their big guys, Nene and Mozgov, in street clothes last night. Jeff Adrien got to see his most PT of the season and played effectively with 9rebs and 2blks in 16mins. He will however most likely be cut today as the Rockets look to sign C Greg Smith from the NBDL. Tough luck, kid.
Update: Jeff Adrien has been waived by the Rockets, and center Greg Smith has been signed. Multi-year deal likely.
About the Author
Written by Mohsin Ghesani
Huge sports fan! More specifically, huge HOUSTON sports fan. Love the Rockets and Texans!