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Houston Rockets Recap: No Rocket Magic in Loss to Orlando

By Tamberlyn Richardson
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Houston Rockets Recap:

Houston entered the night on a four game win streak and got out to a slow start in the first quarter. After battling back to take a lead into the final frame the Rockets succumbed to a young inspired Orlando squad led by Victor Oladipo and Nikola Vucevic.

38. . 113. 169. 120

The Rockets knew not to take this team for granted given they had just beat Chicago, but several poor shot choices were made by the Rockets in the final frame coupled with lapses in their defense. Examining the box score it was Houston who won most of the stat battles on paper:

  • 64 to 54 points in the paint
  • 25 to 12 fast break points
  • 50.6% to 48.9% field goal percentage
  • 6 to 1 blocks
  • 26-22 assists

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Yet the key stat which was most telling was turnovers as Houston had 21 turnovers which resulted in 26 points while Orlando had 17 turnovers resulting in 22 points.

Those four extra points were a significant portion of the Magic 7-point win with perhaps the most important turnover occurring following a Rocket time-out, late in the fourth quarter.

At the time the Magic were up 5-points; the inbound pass was stolen by Payton who tossed the ball to an open Oladipo who slam dunked to give Orlando a 116-109 lead and the Rockets never recovered.

Ultimately the lack of defensive focus early by the Rockets resulted in them even being in a battle in the fourth quarter and is a solid reminder to not take any team for granted.

THE STARTERS

Rockets. JAMES <STRONG>HARDEN</STRONG>. B-. <p><a href=. SG

C.  <strong><br /></strong><div class=. PG. Rockets. PATRICK <STRONG>BEVERLEY</STRONG>

Beverley’s offensive contribution while welcome were not offset by any assists which put Harden in a position to provide the ball handling and took him away from his role of scorer. As much as a 17 point scoring effort is a bonus the fact he had zero assists and was exposed by Magic guard Elfrid Payton late had me wondering if his knee bump earlier in the game affected his movement.

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Beverley’s offensive contribution while welcome were not offset by any assists which put Harden in a position to provide the ball handling and took him away from his role of scorer. As much as a 17 point scoring effort is a bonus the fact he had zero assists and was exposed by Magic guard Elfrid Payton late had me wondering if his knee bump earlier in the game affected his movement.

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