Rockets News

Houston Rockets will look to cool down the red hot Spurs

By Michael Knight
HOUSTON, TEXAS - DECEMBER 22: James Harden #13 of the Houston Rockets drives around DeMar DeRozan #10 of the San Antonio Spurs during the fourth quarter at Toyota Center on December 22, 2018 in Houston, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
HOUSTON, TEXAS - DECEMBER 22: James Harden #13 of the Houston Rockets drives around DeMar DeRozan #10 of the San Antonio Spurs during the fourth quarter at Toyota Center on December 22, 2018 in Houston, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)
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The Houston Rockets are still looking to secure home court advantage in the first round of the playoffs. A huge step to that would be to beat the rival Spurs tonight.

How crazy is the Western Conference? The third-seeded Houston Rockets are just three games up on the fifth through eighth seeds, who are all tied currently at 42-30. It’s a race to the finish to get home court advantage and the Rockets are right in the middle of it.

One of the tied teams is the opponent of Houston tonight, the rival San Antonio Spurs. After being fairly average most of the season, the Spurs are on fire, winning nine of their last 10 games, including wins over the Nuggets, Bucks and Warriors.

The offense of the Spurs has been incredible and very difficult to shut down. They rely on midrange specialists LaMarcus Aldridge and DeMar DeRozan as well as a bunch of solid 3-point shooters. The defense that struggled all year is starting to look competent, as well.

Despite the loss the last time out, the Rockets are pretty hot, too. They’ve won 12 of their last 14 games and will look to get one more against these Spurs.

Bad losses

Coming into tonight, both teams are coming off of bad losses after being hot. The Rockets came back but ultimately lost in overtime to the lowly Grizzlies, even though James Harden tried his hardest with 57 points. That’s a loss the Rockets can’t have as they’re trying to secure a top-3 seed.

The Spurs dropped their last game to the Heat, allowing six players to score in double figures while their two stars had fewer than 20 points. The Heat certainly aren’t bad like the Grizzlies, but are still under .500.

Both the Rockets and the Spurs will be looking to regain some momentum for a final push in these 10 or so games left in the season. The hunt for the No. 2 seed is mostly a pipe dream now for Houston, but still possible if the Nuggets waiver. The Spurs could potentially find themselves in the top 4 if they keep playing well, which would be crazy after their start to the year. Popovich probably deserves some Coach of the Year recognition, as per usual.

D’Antoni says Harden is the best offensive player ever. Next

March Madness is in full swing of course, but if you can watch on a separate screen, be sure to tune into this one. It should be a fun matchup against the Texas rivals.

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