Houston Rockets Game Day: Howard and Harden Ready to Howl


 Houston Rockets Game Day:

Minnesota Timberwolves vs Houston Rockets

Fri Mar 27, 8:00 PM EST – FSN, CSNH, RTSW

Toyota Center – Houston, TX

Record: 16-55 (2-8 in last ten)

Western: 15th

Northwest: 5th

Recent Matchups


  • 102.8 ORTG (26)
  • 111 DRTG (30)
  • 94.5 Pace (11)
  • 72.2 DRB% (30)
  • 0.515 TS% (24)

Latest Results


  • Kevin Martin 20.2 ppg
  • Gorgui Dieng 8.4 rpg
  • Ricky Rubio 8.8 apg
  • Gorgui Dieng 1.7 bpg
  • Corey Brewer 2.3 spg

Record: 48-23 (7-3 in last 10)

Western: 3rd

Southwest: 2nd


  • 106.3 ORTG (13)
  • 103.1 DRTG (6)
  • 96.4 Pace (3)
  • 72.9 DRB% (28)
  • 0.545 TS% (8)

Latest Results

Walking Wounded:


  • Shabazz Muhammad has been lost for the season with a ruptured ligament to his middle finger of his left hand
  • Anthony Bennett remains out with a twisted ankle
  • Kevin Garnett won’t play remaining out with a bad knee
  • Ricky Rubio won’t play Friday (ankle)
  • Kevin Martin will dress, but unlikely to play (hamstring)
  • Nikola Pekovic is out (ankle)
  • Gary Neal is out with a twisted right ankle, day to day
  • Robbie Hummel is out with a broken hand


  • Donatas Motiejunis will not dress (back)
  • Terrence Jones remains out but the Houston Chronicle reports he is making steady progress
  • Patrick Beverley is out with an illness, listed as day to day

Key Match-Ups

Generally we look at one player versus another however the actual team compositions is what is intriguing in this match-up especially since two Minnesota veterans are back who missed both prior meetings due to injury.

The young guns: Andrew Wiggins, Zach LaVine and Gorgui Dieng have all seemingly found a confidence boost coming out of the All-Star break. Though it’s unfortunate Muhammad is lost for the season as well as Anthony Bennett who remains out the fact is this is a young exciting core group with solid veteran balance. Last time out the Wolves had a healthy Ricky Rubio, Nikola Pekovic and Kevin Martin they aren’t so fortunate this time round as all 3 are out.

The Rockets have to be careful handling the rock because this team can kill you on transition.

Factoring in the Rockets are without starter Beverley makes taking care of the ball and being the one to establish the pace possibly the biggest factor to controlling the game.

And while I’ve highlighted the key match-up as more of a core unit versus each other keep an eye on Andrew Wiggins who’ll likely pair up to slow down James Harden.


  • James Harden 27.1 ppg
  • Dwight Howard 10.8 rpg
  • James Harden 7 apg
  • Terrence Jones 1.6 bpg
  • James Harden 1.9 spg

The Pick:

Oddsmakers have Houston favored by13.5 points. Remember last time out though the Wolves played the Rockets closer than expected. Still it’s a check mark in the win column because Harden is super focused.

Next: Rockets can win Title, here's 5 reasons why

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