Houston Rockets: 3 bold predictions for the 2019-20 season
2. The Rockets will finish the season as a top 5 defensive team
The Houston Rockets got off to a terrible start last year. The Rockets won just 9 of their first 20 games and were in quite a tailspin. One of Houston’s biggest problems was their terrible defense, as opponents we able to drive down the lane and punish the Rockets in the paint.
However, once the Rockets got healthy and got back to some of their habits from the 2017-18 season, things started to turn around. The Rockets started to kick their defense into high gear after New Years and then they really turned up the heat in the last couple of months of the regular season.
Houston finished with the second best defensive rating after the All-Star break. Unsurprisingly, that helped the Rockets win 20 of their last 25 games, which outpaced every other team in the league over that stretch.
Assuming the Rockets can stay healthy, this is the type of defensive effort we should see from them from the start of the season. While the departure of defensive guru Jeff Bzdelik is a loss for Houston, the Sacramento Kings’ defense really thrived under the direction of Elston Turner in recent years, so the Rockets are still in good hands going forward.
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