With the Houston Rockets being out of commission, let’s go back in history and look at the best March 23rd performances of Steve Francis’ Rockets career.
It’s now been 13 days since the Houston Rockets last played, as they’re currently on a league-mandated hiatus due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. The break has certainly left us all deprived of basketball action, as we’ve been forced to watch re-watch games that were either played earlier in the season, or games that have been buried in the archives.
Watching these historical games has allowed us to re-visit the careers of many of the long-forgotten players in Houston Rockets’ history, such as Moses Malone, who could easily score 20 points and grab 20 rebounds in the same game at a moment’s notice. Another legendary Rockets’ player who doesn’t get mentioned much is Steve Francis, who joined Yao Ming as the Rockets’ young All-Star duo from 2002-2004.
Francis ultimately played six seasons in Houston, and led the Rockets in assists in each of his first five seasons. On top of that, Francis led the Rockets in scoring in three of his first five seasons, and never finished below second in scoring during that span.
Francis also helped transition the Rockets from a lottery team to a playoff team, as the Rockets ended their four-year postseason drought and returned to the playoffs during the 2003-04 season. Stevie Franchise was ultimately included in the Tracy McGrady trade of 2004, and he played two seasons with future Houston Rockets center Dwight Howard in Orlando, before playing for the New York Knicks.
Francis later returned to the Space City during the 2007-08 season, but the reunion didn’t last longer than three games, as the Rockets had replaced Francis’ coach Jeff Van Gundy with Rick Adelman. This understandably made things much more difficult for The Franchise, as JVG was at the helm during his peak years, and Adelman didn’t have any attachment to the three-time All-Star.
As today is March 23rd, let’s take a look at the best games Steve Francis had as a member of the Houston Rockets on that date.
Next: No. 2