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The five Houston Rockets with the most to prove to this season

LAKE BUENA VISTA, FLORIDA - AUGUST 22: Eric Gordon #10 stands over James Harden #13 of the Houston Rockets against the Oklahoma City Thunder during the third quarter in Game Three of the Western Conference First Round during the 2020 NBA Playoffs at The Field House at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex on August 22, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. 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 the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
LAKE BUENA VISTA, FLORIDA - AUGUST 22: Eric Gordon #10 stands over James Harden #13 of the Houston Rockets against the Oklahoma City Thunder during the third quarter in Game Three of the Western Conference First Round during the 2020 NBA Playoffs at The Field House at ESPN Wide World Of Sports Complex on August 22, 2020 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. 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 the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Mike Ehrmann/Getty Images)
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Houston Rockets
James Harden #13 of the Houston Rockets (Photo by Kim Klement-Pool/Getty Images)

With the 2020-21 NBA season set to tip-off in the coming days, the Houston Rockets are preparing to make a push for a ninth straight trip to the postseason. These are the five Rockets with the most to prove in 2020-21.

The Houston Rockets enter the 2020-21 season with everything to prove as a franchise. They lost their head coach of four years in Mike D’Antoni and their general manager, Daryl Morey, of the past thirteen years to Eastern Conference contenders.

The changes didn’t stop with just the front office and coaching staff as Russell Westbrook was swapped for John Wall and a first-round pick. To make matters worse, all of the volatility has left James Harden, their franchise superstar, asking for a trade to greener pastures.

With Harden all but certain to leave at some time this season the Rockets of 2020-21 will hardly resemble the teams that preceded them. In a cruel twist of fate, this season’s team will be measured by the lofty standards that the departed Morey, D’Antoni, and Harden set.

This is a franchise and fanbase that have come to expect playoff births and contender status. With all of the high profile exits this offseason, it will be incredibly difficult to replicate those high standards.

However, every departure provides an opportunity for someone else to prove that they belong in the best basketball league in the world. The moment is there to be seized and the Rockets have shown no indication of throwing in the towel and starting fresh.

The Rockets as a franchise have a tremendous amount to prove this season and that inevitably trickles down to the players. These are the five Rockets with the most to prove in 2020-21.

Next: Number 5

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