2 head-scratching decisions that have come back to haunt the Rockets

Denver Nuggets v Houston Rockets
Denver Nuggets v Houston Rockets / Alex Bierens de Haan/GettyImages
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The Houston Rockets started the 2023-24 season with a bang, showing promise and giving their fans hope that the years of being a basement team were over. The Rockets went on a six-game winning streak, which gave them a 6-3 record, and later went on a five-game winning streak, putting them at 13-9.

The Rockets have since gone 12-23, ending all excitement and optimism from fans. And all talk about the team making the play-in tournament has also ceased, as the Rockets are currently 4.5 games out of the 10th-seeded Golden State Warriors, who appear primed to go on a run.

The Rockets' best chance is hoping for the Los Angeles Lakers to flame-out, which we've seen in recent years. However, LeBron James is still on the roster.

He and Anthony Davis are going to do everything in their power to ensure another championship run. And even if they're unsuccessful, the Rockets will still have to catch up to them. Based on what we've seen from the team, that's a far-fetched goal.

The Rockets have gone 1-2 since the All-Star break, ranking 24th in both net rating and offensive rating. Oh, and that defense that once ranked first in the league? It now ranks 20th.

And the team ranks 26th in long-range shooting, which has been a challenge all season.

Could these slump have been prevented? Yes.

Let's take a look at two decisions that have marred the franchise this season.