2. Houston Rockets Playing Championship Defense?
It’s no secret that the Rockets have improved defensively in the NBA Bubble, but the astonishing fact is it has carried over in the playoffs. In Game 2 specifically, the Rockets recorded eight steals and three blocks compared to the Thunder’s two steals.
Accounting for a portion of the steals goes to Robert Covington and James, who each had three. Covington and Harden have been serving as the catalysts that get the others going in, locking up and harassing their assignments.
Houston did an outstanding job in neutralizing Oklahoma City’s big man Steven Adams, holding him to only eight points, 11 rebounds, and three assists. Tucker and Covington have done a phenomenal job of holding him down in the paint and getting under his skin, sometimes leaving him defending the perimeter shooters.
The type of defense that the Rockets are playing right now is forcing the Thunder sometimes to force shots to earn their buckets and frustrating them, which will be a key to advancing to the Western Conference Semifinals.
Next: Rockets' chemistry