It was not Carmelo Anthony, but Kristaps Porzingis who led the New York Knicks over the Houston Rockets 107-102, Saturday, at the Toyota Center. The Rockets have now lost their last five out of six games.
3 Things We Saw:
The Inside game:
When they stop jacking up 3-point shots their offense runs a lot smoother.
From the start of the game it was clear that the Houston Rockets would attack the basket more than settling for ill-advised 3-point shots. This was the best the Rockets’ offense has looked all season.
In the first half they shot 54 percent from the field and only took six three point shots making four. What was strange about this game was how the Rockets dominated the points in the paint without Dwight Howard on the floor (42-20).
The way the Rockets attacked the basket gave Clint Capela his career high with 16 points shooting 77 percent from the field.
Steal & dunk. Tune into ROOT SPORTS for more first quarter action. https://t.co/3DQF4cwdhG
— Houston Rockets (@HoustonRockets) November 22, 2015
Harden the Leader:
Since McHale’s firing, no one has taken more heat than James Harden. Analyst started questioning Harden’s game in terms of his leadership on the court, or lack thereof especially on the defensive end. However, Saturday night might have been Harden’s best all-around game of the season. He had 24 points while shooting 40 percent from the field, made plays for his team with 10 assists.
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It may also have been his best defensive effort as he registered 3 steals and 2 blocks in 38 minutes. Harden also cleaned the glass with 7 rebounds. Behind the work Ariza did on Carmelo, Harden was the Rockets second best defensive player.
Hopefully Harden will continue to play defense like this throughout the season to get more respect around the league and help his team.
If the Rookie of the year was handed out tonight, my vote would have gone to Porzingis. This guy is having an amazing rookie season, and nobody saw this coming. He had 24 points, 14 rebounds and 7 blocked shots to lead the Knicks to victory. The Rockets found out how good Porzingis is during the second quarter when he scored 10 points shooting 4-of-5 from the field.
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