With the game meaning nothing to the Houston Rockets, they decided to give some key players rest in the regular season finale. James Harden, Jeremy Lin, Chandler Parsons, and Omer Asik sat out while Patrick Beverley, Dwight Howard and Terrence Jones saw limited time.
The Rockets were led by Rio Grande Viper legend, Troy Daniels. Daniels started in place of Harden tonight and dropped 22 points on the Pelicans, including hitting six of the 11 three pointers he launched in the game. Beverley finished with 14 points in 22 minutes and Howard finished with 7 points in 25 minutes. Jones played 26 minutes and finished with 17 points and 8 rebounds.
The Rockets depth has been tested this season and Kevin McHale hasn’t found bodies he can trust off the bench. Yesterday’s game was a great chance for some bench players to try and separate themselves for key playing time in the offseason.
Omri Casspi got the start at small forward and finished with 9 points and 8 rebounds. Jordan Hamilton finished with 14 points, including three 3-pointers in 27 minutes. Isaiah Canaan struggled in his 25 minutes off the bench with just 2 points.
Donatas Motijuenas finished with 11 points and 10 rebounds in just 17 minutes off the bench. Josh Powell, who just signed with the Rockets after waiving Dexter Pittman, finished with 4 points and 5 rebounds in 19 minutes.
The Rockets finished the season at 54-28 and will be the #4 seed in the Western Conference playoffs. They will face the Portland Trail Blazers, who also finished at 54-28, but lost the tiebreaker to the Rockets.
The Rockets first playoff game against the Trail Blazers is scheduled for 8:30 PM on Sunday night and can be seen on TNT.