The Houston Rockets are not a team that likes to take the easy way to victories. Tonight against the Memphis Grizzlies the Rockets pulled out all sorts of scenarios to win 100-92, and move their record to 20-11.
After a full on offensive barrage from the Rockets on Christmas, the team fell back to earth. On a night when Dwight Howard scored 2 points, and James Harden only made two field goals, the fact the Rockets won the game is astonishing.
James Harden did finish with 27 points, thanks to going 22 of 25 from the free throw line. The Grizzlies as a team only attempted 20 free throws, making 11. Howard dealt with foul trouble early on, never had an opportunity to really contribute. Howard finished with 2 points and 3 rebounds.
Terrence Jones brought his great game from Christmas back to Houston. Jones is picking the right games(nationally televised) to show his potential. Jones finished with 20 points and 5 boards. Chandler Parsons didn’t shoot great but he was everywhere, scoring 15 points, 11 boards, and dishing out 5 assists. Jeremy Lin was solid with 18 points, 6 boards, and 2 assists.
Rebounding became an issue once Howard picked up his second foul in the first. Memphis out rebounded the Rockets 49 to 41, but the telling stat is the offensive boards number which Memphis lead 20 to 7.
Donatas Motiejunas played a solid 23 minutes of defense, to the shock of many.
When a team wins games that don’t fit the normal criteria for a victory, then the team is learning to not only win through adversity, but also becoming a better team overall. Rockets are 7-1 in the second game of a back-to-back this season.
The Rockets next game is Saturday against the New Orleans Pelicans.