3. The Houston Rockets are strangely viewed as underdogs
It seems as if everyone has the Western Conference Finals predicted already. The battle of L.A. is what many believe will eventually happen, but people forget about the Rockets and how they have a chance to eliminate both teams.
The Rockets are easily a contender this year, but by the way, both L.A. teams and even the Denver Nuggets get all the shine, it almost feels like the Rockets are now an underdog, which is extremely beneficial for Houston. Imagine being a contender for a championship while simultaneously being overlooked.
Teams like the Oklahoma City Thunder and Dallas Mavericks are underdogs, but not contenders, at least not yet. But, the Rockets seem to be forgotten about as it pertains to the most elite teams in the West.
Now I’m not saying the Rockets are a Cinderella team, as they have two former MVPs, a former Coach of the Year, and a former Sixth Man of the Year, but both L.A. teams are the favorites to represent the West. Both teams might take the Rockets lightly, which wouldn’t be the best of ideas.
Also, for both the Lakers and Clippers, this is a chip or bust season, whereas the Rockets are having an experiment year with the change to small-ball. It’s easy to say LeBron James and Kawhi Leonard have bigger chips on their shoulders.
With the superstar duo of Harden and Westbrook combined with the great core of P.J. Tucker, Danuel House, Eric Gordon, Jeff Green, Robert Covington, Austin Rivers, and Demarre Carroll, the Rockets can easily make a run. The team is perfectly constructed around Russ and Harden, but it’s all about execution, which I believe they will do.
James Harden and Russell Westbrook are officially overlooked underdogs, which will play a strong role in H-Town, reaching the 2020 NBA Finals.
Next: No. 2