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Houston Rockets: Golden opportunity with Kevin Durant out for series

OAKLAND, CA - MAY 8: Kevin Durant #35 of the Golden State Warriors defends James Harden #13 of the Houston Rockets during Game Five of the Western Conference Semifinals of the 2019 NBA Playoffs on May 8, 2019 at ORACLE Arena in Oakland, California. 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 Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Noah Graham/NBAE via Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA - MAY 8: Kevin Durant #35 of the Golden State Warriors defends James Harden #13 of the Houston Rockets during Game Five of the Western Conference Semifinals of the 2019 NBA Playoffs on May 8, 2019 at ORACLE Arena in Oakland, California. 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 Getty Images License Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Noah Graham/NBAE via Getty Images)
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The Houston Rockets are currently one loss away from their season coming to an end. Can they come back and win the series, especially with the golden opportunity presented to them?

The Houston Rockets are down 3-2 to the Golden State Warriors in this best-of-seven series between the two powerhouses. The Rockets, in their losses, have look disjointed and haven’t hustled as hard on both ends of the court.

In last night’s hard breaking loss, the Rockets came back from down 20+ points to make it a close one. Durant went down with an injury at the end of the run from Houston, but it didn’t make a difference. The Rockets couldn’t guard the Warriors and they dropped 32 points in the final quarter without their best player.

Despite being down in the series, news came out today that Kevin Durant will miss the last two games with a calf strain. Much like last season, a star being injured could potentially change the outcome of the series. It won’t be easy, by any means. The Warriors are still an extremely dangerous and talented team, one of the best ever assembled.

Golden State’s Kevin Durant has suffered a mild strain on his right calf and expected to be re-evaluated next week, league source tells ESPN.

— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) May 9, 2019

Rockets must be better

To win this series and two straight games, the Rockets must be better. They have to get more production out of Clint Capela and Chris Paul, both of whom have struggled in their minutes.

Capela in particular has been super frustrating to watch. After talking a ton of mess before the series, he’s been game-planned out by the Warriors and has been lazy in his playing time. He has had sequences where he’s been out-rebounded by the likes of Stephen Curry and Shaun Livingston. That is unacceptable from your starting center, whether it’s a good matchup for him or not.

Chris Paul has looked like a shell of his former self in this series. He was good in the Utah one, but has struggled to find his shot in the whole postseason. In these Warriors games, he’s making uncharacteristic passes that lead to bad shots or turnovers. He needs to regain some confidence, and a big Game 6 could do just that for him.

The lack of defense in the fourth quarter last night was embarrassing. A team without their best player looked unstoppable when the Rockets had no right losing. Obviously, the Warriors are still incredible and have multiple All-Stars. But losing that one really hurts. Instead of an opportunity to close the series tomorrow, they now must win two more against a great opponent.

Next. Harden calls his red eye his lucky charm

Do the Rockets have the guts to do just that?

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