Houston Rockets: 5 things we learned from the preseason

Photo by Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images
Photo by Joe Murphy/NBAE via Getty Images /
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Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images
Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images /

5. The Rockets could have a top 10 defense

Besides the observation that Paul and Harden are indeed compatible, this was possibly the biggest takeaway from the preseason. The Houston Rockets have a much, much better defense than they had a season ago.

The Rockets only allowed their opponents to score 93.8 points per game, which ranked 3rd in the preseason. This is a massive improvement over the 2016-17 season, when Houston allowed 106.4 points a game.

Further more, Houston also forced 10.4 steals and 20.0 turnovers a game, which ranked third in both categories. They also averaged 24.0 points a game off of turnovers, which again ranked third in the league. Lastly, Houston ranked first in deflections (17.8) and fifth in loose balls recovered (7.2).

All in all, Houston’s defense looked great throughout most of the preseason. Their lost to the Spurs, who scored 106 points, was the most that Houston allowed throughout the entire preseason. It’s even more impressive considering that Chris Paul, who is arguably Houston’s best defender, missed two of the five games.

Next: No. 4