Preview: Houston Rockets vs. New Orleans Pelicans

Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

 

I don’t care who you are, that Pelican is scary. Look at that mom smiling while her child is being scarred for life by that avian monster. Shame on you.

Well on to pressing issues. The Rockets and the Pelicans meet tonight for the first time in the regular season and it’s setting up to be a pretty good game.

The Pelicans are coming off a dominant win over the Nuggets that saw Tyreke Evans put up a slash line of 19/10/7  (pts/as/rbs) off the bench. New Orleans has a lot of young talent. Jrue Holiday and Anthony Davis could be a very strong duo for a very long time, while Eric Gordon, Tyreke Evans and Ryan Anderson provide value in their own ways.

Another thing of note is that Eric Gordon is considered questionable with a hip contusion, so for the purposes of the matchups I’m going to assume he doesn’t play.

TO THE MATCHUPS!

Point Guard: Jeremy Lin vs. Jrue Holiday

As I stated above, I really like what Holiday can do at the PG position. At this stage in his career he is better than Jeremy Lin, but Jeremy has been playing very well lately. If his on ball defense continues to impress than I think I can call this one a draw, but really this might be one of Lin’s toughest assignments. Holiday is small and very quick so Aaron Brooks might be seeing a lot of the court tonight if Jeremy can’t stay in front. I just tried to talk myself out of it but I’m doing it anyways, it’s a draw.

Edge: Even

 

Shooting Guard: James Harden vs. Anthony Morrow (Tyreke Evans)

Evans comes off the bench to play about 30 min each night now, while Morrow starts the game in place of Eric Gordon. James Harden is better than both of them but Evans is a big dude and if he cares enough he could give Harden some trouble. Luckily he is still Tyreke Evans so I think we are safe.

Edge: Rockets

 

Small Forward: Chandler Parsons vs. Al-Farouq Aminu

Aminu is all defense and rebounding. He might actually be getting the Harden assignment but either way he will have his hands full with Parsons or Harden. Aminu will be out there to hound whoever has the hot hand but I think it will make little difference.

Edge: Rockets

 

Power Forward: Terrence Jones vs. Ryan Anderson

Did you guys know Anderson is averaging 20 points?!? Totally flying under my radar. He is in the midst of a shooting slump but his bad days are still good days for most of our bench so despite Terrence Jones playing his tail off lately I’m going to give the edge to Anderson. Honestly I think this will be tough night for Anderson because Jones is pretty good on the perimeter but you don’t average 20 points on accident (right AB?).

Edge: Pelicans

 

Center: Dwight Howard vs. Anthony Davis 

I like it when number 1 picks live up to the hype, it adds just a little bit of sanity to an otherwise insane world. Davis has a bright future and he can do some extremely athletic things on both sides of the floor, but it looks like Dwight could snap him like a twig so that doesn’t bode well. A lot of post play is based on being able to hold your ground, but against Howard there is no way he can do that.

Edge: Rockets

 

Bench

Rockets- Omri Casspi, Aaron Brooks, Franciso Garcia

Pelicans- Alexis Ajinca, Tyreke Evans (kinda), Brian Roberts, Darius Miller

Edge: Rockets

 

Injuries:

Rockets- Omer Asik, Greg Smith, Patrick Beverley

Pelicans- Eric Gordon, Greg Stiemsma

 

Prediction: Rockets win 115-102

Topics: Houston Rockets

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