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Houston Rockets Daily Rocket Science: Horseshoes and hand grenades

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Houston Rockets, Daily Rocket Science: Close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades…

The Houston Rockets were nearly able to take down the invincible Golden State Warriors last night. Though scoreless through the entirety of the first quarter, James Harden finished with 37 points, 5 rebounds, and 5 assists. Dwight Howard played well, totaling 16 points with 15 boards to go with it. Trevor Ariza had one of his better games this season with 19 points on 7/13 shooting.

The Rockets fought back from a 16 point first quarter deficit to take a 5 point lead a few minutes into the third quarter. The team held Draymond Green to just 8 points and Klay Thompson to 13. There were times when Houston looked like the superior team when compared to the defending champs. The final score showed a 13-point loss, but it felt much closer than that.

The only issue with the game being close, is that close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades.

Houston Rockets news and notes from around the web

One of the biggest storylines from last night was that former coach Kevin McHale stepped in as a guest analyst for TNT’s coverage of the game. There was an elephant in the room for most of the night, but McHale did get a chance to discuss his thoughts about his firing 11 games into the season. Bleacher Report’s Tyler Conway covered the interview and his frank comments about the team: Kevin McHale Comments on James Harden, Being Fired by Rockets

Firing a guy with his recent resume after 11 games reeked of desperation. McHale’s probably right to be a little sour.

On the other hand, Festivus was almost two months ago. There is no real reason to air grievances three months after being fired, and the comments bordered on throwing players under the bus.

In other news that doesn’t necessarily pertain directly to basketball, the relationship between Khloe Kardashian and James Harden looks like it may be over. Most Rockets fans should see this as a good thing after looking at how other NBA players were affected by dating Kardashians. I don’t know much about their relationship, but I know that Harden spent a good amount of time this past summer partying in LA, which probably played a part in him being in bad shape like McHale discussed. Dan Feldman of NBC Sports covered the story: Report: Khloe Kardashian dumped James Harden

US Weekly: “

Khloé Kardashian

is back on the market. The

Strong Looks Better Naked

author, 31, has split from boyfriend

James Harden

, a source confirms exclusively to

Us Weekly

.”

“She dumped him weeks ago,” the source tells US

It’s definitely not common to post on a player and his girlfriend breaking up, but Harden had to know dating a Kardashian would make his personal life public. For better or worse, that’s part of the deal.

More from Space City Scoop

The 2015-2016 campaign has left the Rockets wondering what to do with their roster. Something needs to happen, seeing as the team is currently sitting at the 8th seed in their conference. The point guard spot has been frustrating, consisting of a “3 and D” guy in Patrick Beverley and the underperforming Ty Lawson. While most fans agree that the Lawson experiment has failed and should be given up on, some outliers argue the opposite: that Ty Lawson should be given more chances and that Beverley would be better off traded. I don’t know how to feel about his interesting stance, but House of Houston’s James D’Elia makes some good points: Houston Rockets: The Big Decision: Lawson or Beverley?

Our cult hero Pat Bev has a reputation as a defensive specialist and his hard-nosed play has endowed him in the hearts of all Rockets fans.  Over time, he has really pissed off those of the opposition. It would be crazy to think that the Rockets should get rid of their premier defensive-stopper for a guy who has struggled to find a place in the offense.

In what might be a shock for most of you, Lawson’s defensive rating is just two points lower than that of Beverley so in reality he is no longer the lock down specialist he used to be, and what he lacks on offense really hurts the Rockets.

The Rockets have been close to making trades, close to winning games, close to obtaining the 6th seed, and close to being a good team. However, close isn’t going to cut it. The Rockets, if they lose tonight to the Portland Trail Blazers, will be out of the playoff picture. For a team that began the season with the championship trophy in their sights, struggling to make the playoffs is embarrassing. This season has been full of a lot of close, but lacking pretty severely in anything actually accomplished.

Send our Editor any Rockets-related article/video/tweet/gram/vine that we may have missed via Twitter direct message to @TTOTambz.

Next: Should the Houston Rockets Trade for...Markieff Morris?

With the trade deadline around the corner, make sure you visit Space City Scoop on a daily basis for our trade series. Each day, SCS will feature an article on who the Rockets should trade for or what it would take to part ways with the players currently on the roster. Finally, we’ll assess the Rockets and each team in the Association in terms of what their needs are, if they should be buyers or sellers, and also speculate on who would be the ideal trade target.

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