Despite getting off to a shaky start on offense, the Houston Rockets have won four out of their first five games.
The first week of the season has told us what we expected in the offseason: the Houston Rockets are one of the best teams in the league.
The Rockets have gotten off to a 4-1 start, but they could be just 2-3. Houston caught a break in the season opener against Golden State when Kevin Durant‘s game-winning shot turned out to be a little too late. And Eric Gordon had to sink a buzzer beating 3-pointer to lift Houston over the struggling 76ers.
The Houston Rockets have done all of this without Chris Paul. The biggest concern of the offseason was how Chris Paul and James Harden would co-exist in the back court. Paul did play in the season opener, but he was limited to just four points and he watched the conclusion of the game from the bench. Paul acted as a facilitator in the first game, finishing with 11 assists while Harden notched 10. That was the biggest positive for the Harden-Paul duo in the first game, as it’s rare that two players on the same team finish with double-digit assists in a regulation game.
It’s easy to overreact in the first week of the season, despite having such a small sample size. But many of the current trends won’t continue. Giannis Antetokounmpo is unlikely to continue averaging 36.8 points a game on 65.9 percent shooting, and the Orlando Magic won’t finish the season as the first seed in the Eastern Conference. So to avoid looking a bit silly at the end of the year, let’s examine three rational takeaways from the first week.
Next: No. 3