The Houston Rockets are almost to the finish line of the NBA season which will mark the beginning of a new one, the playoffs.
The Houston Rockets are almost to the finish line of the NBA season which mark the beginning of a new one, the playoffs.
Yes, Game 81 was on deck tonight with the Houston Rockets taking on their conference foe in the Los Angeles Clippers.
Both teams are primed for the postseason but the Houston Rockets have their No. 3 seed in hand while the Clippers are still battling with the Utah Jazz for the coveted 4th spot.
Home-court advantage is everything in a playoff match up so it would be prudent for any team to take advantage of it any way that they can.
And you better believe the Clippers won’t relent in this match up tonight.
So what happened?
From the opening tip, things were tight with both teams as they came out guns a-blazing.
The Clippers jumped out by as much as six points after a Chris Paul three at the 6:04 mark.
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The three-ball continued to fall for both teams quite well with them using the arc as if were going out of style.
It was glorified arm wrestling match but the quarter finished with the Rockets knotted up with the Clips at 35 a piece.
The 2nd quarter involved the Rockets shooting continuing to be prolific, with them going up by as much as eight twice with the most recent being at 6:20 mark when Ryan Anderson nailed a three for his 12th point of the game.
Rockets 52, Clippers 44
Harden quickly stopped the bleeding by drawing a foul and nailing his free throws to put the Rockets back up by two.
Jamal Crawford got the hot hand by nailing a three and getting himself to the line, putting the Clippers up 61-57 at the half.
The 1st half proved that this was going to be a gritty match up as both teams combined for close to 40 three-balls attempted.
The third quarter certainly indicated that the Clippers were ready to pull away and the Rockets didn’t quite have an answer for that.
In addition, the team’s effort started to wane as the Clippers continued to pour it on.
At one point, it was a 25-3 run for the Clippers in the first seven or so minutes of the quarter.
Mike D’Antoni eventually waved the surrender flag, yanking all of the starters and letting the deep bench get some action.
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The 4th quarter was more of a formality as the Clippers cruised 125-96 win.
There was nothing much else to write about here other than we saw how valuable Troy Williams will be come playoff time and that Paul Pierce can still bump his way in to 15th on the all-time scoring list with 26,397 points.
And while on that note, we saw Williams get hit with a hard shove to the ground by Marreese Speights in the 1st half.
It was ruled a common foul but it should’ve been so much more.
Nicely done Truth — I’ve been a fan of yours from the get-go but it just sucked that it had be against my team, who clearly is looking more toward their first-round match up this weekend with the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Harden had 14 points, seven rebounds and six assists.
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As for the Clippers, Paul and Crawford had 19 points each, with nine assists to CP3’s credit.
There were four others in double-figure scoring: Griffin, Jordan, Luc Mbah a Moute and Pierce.
And there you have it folks — what could’ve been wasn’t.
It’s time to head into the last game of the season against the Minnesota Timberwolves at Toyota Center Wednesday.
See you then.