The Houston Rockets have come back down to Earth of late, as they've won just three of their last ten games, with the three wins coming against the Utah Jazz, Charlotte Hornets, and Los Angeles Lakers, who have gone a combined 58-86 this season. The Rockets are currently 22-25, which has them 1th in the Western Conference and right outside of their goal of finishing within the top ten in the West.
Jalen Green has been a positive of late, as he's averaged 29.8 points, 7.2 rebounds, 52 percent from the field, 36 percent from deep, and 94 percent from the foul line through the last five games. However, the Rockets have still been without Tari Eason, who is one of the best defenders and rebounders on the team, which has been felt with him off the court.
The Rockets have seven games before the All-Star break and five of them are on the road, where the Rockets have gone 5-16 in 2023-24. It could get ugly rather quickly.
Especially considering the Rockets' drop off on the defensive end of late. However, it's not all doom and gloom, as Zach Harper of The Athletic released the latest power rankings and listed the Rockets as the 16th best team in the league, penciling them in the fourth tier, which he defines as "play-in teams or better".
Latest power rankings provide optimism for Rockets fans.
Harper had the Rockets ranked as the 19th best team in his previous rankings, meaning they've leapfrogged the Miami Heat and Chicago Bulls and Utah Jazz. The Lakers also came in behind the Rockets on Harper's rankings.
Harper's Western Conference rankings are below:
1. LA Clippers
2. Denver Nuggets
3. Minnesota Timberwolves
4. Oklahoma City Thunder
5. Sacramento Kings
6. Phoenix Suns
7. New Orleans Pelicans
8. Dallas Mavericks
9. Houston Rockets
10. Utah Jazz
11. Los Angeles Lakers
12. Memphis Grizzlies
13. Golden State Warriors
14. San Antonio Spurs
15. Portland Trail Blazers
Needless to say, the Rockets (and their fans) would be very happy if these are the standings at the end of the season.