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How many games will the Houston Rockets win this season?

Since I’ve been doing this, I’ve written a season preview before each campaign.  This is not that.  I don’t know enough about this team to even try and preview it.  So on that point, we’ll wait until a few preseason games are under the team’s belt…or at least until I’m able to actually watch one.

For now, my interest is the early predictions, from the few things we know.

What we know:

  • Kevin Martin will be on the team and will have a role.
  • The starting lineup will be Lin, Martin, Parsons, Asik, and Patterson.
  • There is no “veteran presence” on this team, in the usual meaning of that phrase.  Kevin Martin is an older player but not a mentor figure.
  • There is no continuity.  This team is starting from scratch.  No chemistry is being carried over from last season.
  • The coach is relatively new.

What we think we know:

  • Jeremy Lamb and Terrence Jones seem to be the real deal.  At the least, they will be in the rotation.
  • Jeremy Lin will have the ball in his hands.
  • Royce White will be at a disadvantage.
  • Omer Asik is, at the very least, a competent starting center.  He will anchor the defense.

What we need to find out:

  • Has Marcus Morris improved?  Those who actually were able to watch the game the other night reported improvement.  This team essentially has 5 rookies.
  • How long will it take Motiejunas to adjust?  Recall that Luis Scola struggled for much of his rookie season before adapting to the NBA game.  If Motiejunas does not produce early, that does not mean he is a bust.
  • Will Royce White even crack the rotation?  Right now, he’s projected to be a ’4′, a position also filled by Marcus Morris and Terrence Jones, in addition to Patterson and Motiejunas.  I fear White might not ever catch up and be the odd man out.
  • Will Patrick Patterson bounce back?  He was putrid offensively last season.  If he can’t regain his rookie form, he will be ousted from the starting lineup.
  • How will the team look defensively?  In Parsons and Asik, they have two elite defenders in their starting lineup.  Patterson is, at the least, very good (though I’d contest he’s elite as a help defender.).  Martin is bad.  And it can go either way on Lin, depending on your perspective.  Most importantly, there is no chemistry, and the biggest determinant in defensive prowess is team communication and cohesion.

So what do you think?  Right now, I think they can win anywhere from 30-35 games.  They have too much talent to be horrible but I don’t see this team being good.  Still, we’re only one game in.

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Total comments: 34
  • Chichos says 1 YEAR ago I see the low 30s as the most realistic expectation. D-mo will need a year to adjust to the NBA game and rookies who come in and average a double double (or close to it) in the NBA are very very rare. So lets just back off the T-Jones as borderline all star band wagon.

    On top of this, as fans, we want the Rockets to lose a lot of games this year. That gives us the best draft pick and the best chance to add an impact player through trade, free agency, or the draft. We are still early in this rebuild and we need all the "foundational" players we can get.
  • RocketMan says 1 YEAR ago I feel like they will win more than 30 games for sure. I think they are capable of winning 40 if key players stay healthy, but I can't give them better than 40 wins without seeing some regular season action with our new roster. Going to be fun to watch either way. I don't see us getting shut down offensively by many teams. The biggest factor will be our ability to shut down big teams and maybe steal a few regular season wins from some of the offensive powerhouses. Remember, we have a history of giant-killing in the past that I hope didn't leave with the rest of the team this offseason.
  • tombrokeoff says 1 YEAR ago based on the recent developments, ive started thinking 40-42 on the season. hopefully that doesnt mean another 14th pick.
  • Steven says 1 YEAR ago 45 wins.

    Asik is better than advertised. Harden is a top 3 SG. Parsons is a shutdown wing. If his shot improves can average 15+ points a game with all the pick an rolls that the PG&SG are going to do. Patterson is ok, T-Jones looks like a young Lamar Odom. Lin is the big unknown. I think 15/8 is realistic.
  • rockets best fan says 1 YEAR ago after the events of the past day I think I need to revise my season prediction on wins. I can now see us being a .500 team this year with a posibility of sneaking in the backdoor on the playoffs. harden will become the one thing we have not had since t-mac was in his prime.....a closer. someone who isn't afraid to take the last shot with the game on the line. I remember when jeby said we would win 35 games and I was like impossible. I don't know if he has powers where he can look into the future or not, but I must admit he was right on this one. say jeby you think I could bother you for some lotto numbers next week? :lol:
  • Stephen says 2 YEARs ago The Rockets would have to be epically bad to win 25 or fewer games.
    The Rockets are in the West and even BAD Western teams beat Eastern teams fairly regularly,especially since the East has so many bad teams.

    The past three seasons have seen just 9 teams win less than 30 games(prorating 2012 season against full season).
    Only Minn has managed to win less than 20 games over past 3 seasons-they did it twice!
    NO was the worst team in the West last yr and they won 21 games in a shortened season.

    Over past 3 seasons the teams in West w/less than 30 wins:
    2011/2-NO(21 actual,26 prorated), Sac(22,27), GS(23,28.5)
    2010/11-Minn(17), Sac(24)
    2009/10-Minn(15), Sac(25), GS(26), Clips(29).

    Meanwhile the East has been churning out bad,bad teams like clockwork.
    In 2011/12 5 teams would have won less than 30
    In 2010/11 4 teams won less than 30
    In 2009/10 5 teams won less than 30.

    The floor should be about 30 games.
    Unless the early scheduling buries the team and destroys team cohesion.
    First 20 games see the Rockets play 14 times against last season's Play-Off teams.
    Thru Dec 31 the Rockets play 31 games and 22 are against last season's Play-Off teams.
  • feelingsupersonic says 2 YEARs ago I second what ObstructTheLore and rockets best fan are putting down. I am more from the school of thought that the Rockets will fall into that "15 to 25 wins this season" category. There will be flashes from this team and perhaps a couple of great upsets but there will be many more losses that come in blowouts as well as many losses in close games. This is a brand new team that must get to know each other, then build chemistry and then suffer through much losing to learn how to win. I hope there is a core group that develops out of this seasons roster, that is my biggest hope.
  • rocketrick says 2 YEARs ago I'm not going to predict how many games I think the Rockets youngsters are going to win this year. Instead, I want to sit back and enjoy watching our guys develop and our team chemistry develop over the long season. There will be many highs and lows (probably much more of the latter, unfortunately) over the course of the season and that also builds a team's true character. Especially how well they bounce back from their losses, whether it be a nail biter or a blow out against one of the elite teams.

    In the end, I just want to see the Rockets compete each and every night and make some of those elite teams sweat a bit at the end of the season as those elite teams compete for playoff seeding. And if by the grace of God the Rockets sneak into the playoffs this season, that will be most enjoyable for all Rockets fans!
  • rockets best fan says 2 YEARs ago

    ObstructTheLore, on 16 October 2012 - 03:27 AM said:


    Man I think 15-25. They'll have moments and games where they look like a 35 plus win team I just don't think they'll be able to sustain it for long stretches.

    I am looking forward to watching Terrence Jones though, he looks like the most capable of becoming a star to me. Im also hoping Parsons does indeed get better but I have a feeling he's already very near his ceiling just like Buddinger and Patterson seemed to be after promising rookie years.

    Anyway I'm predicting lots of 15 points or less quarters, a good number of bad blowouts, and way more close losses than close wins.

    This was my first post here after being a reader for 2 years. I promise I won't always be as negative as this.
    totally agree......and welcome to the forum. it amazes me that so many of you have such high expectations for this team. don't get me wrong I love the rockets, but compairing this team to last year's team is like compairing apples and oranges. last year's team was young but had a lot of veteren talent. you pretty much knew what to expect from each player on any given night. while I believe the talent we have on this team now has higher ceiling than last years team we still have no experience in the nba. preseason is fool's gold. when the real games start durant will not be playing 18 minutes a game. also some seem to think we will sneak up on teams while possible but not likely. if we get a few wins teams will stop over looking us. most of the rooks we have...have never experience the kind of travel schedule nba players must endure, have never played against talent this good every night. this is why rooks struggle. yes we may see flashes of fantastic play, but we will also see some stink up the gym play. while I know for true fans it's hard to not speak with your heart when dicussing the rockets it's unrealistic to expect great things so soon and trust me I do expect great things from this team. just not so soon. we must grow up and develope chemistry while playing for keeps. thats a steep learning curve that's bound to catch up with us during the season.
  • tombrokeoff says 2 YEARs ago

    Rahat Huq, on 15 October 2012 - 14:13 PM said:


    Maybe I'm overrating the team but I feel they'll win more games than most of you are saying. I think 30 for sure.


    they might be in a lot of games that they end up losing late. thats been somewhat of a problem with this team for awhile. pretty much a different team now, but being younger isnt going to help that cause i dont believe.
  • ObstructTheLore says 2 YEARs ago Man I think 15-25. They'll have moments and games where they look like a 35 plus win team I just don't think they'll be able to sustain it for long stretches.

    I am looking forward to watching Terrence Jones though, he looks like the most capable of becoming a star to me. Im also hoping Parsons does indeed get better but I have a feeling he's already very near his ceiling just like Buddinger and Patterson seemed to be after promising rookie years.

    Anyway I'm predicting lots of 15 points or less quarters, a good number of bad blowouts, and way more close losses than close wins.

    This was my first post here after being a reader for 2 years. I promise I won't always be as negative as this.
  • Cooper says 2 YEARs ago 35 or so possibly more depending on the rooks and injuries.
  • Steven says 2 YEARs ago 30-52. End up with 2 top 6 picks in next years draft.
  • sircharles says 2 YEARs ago i think this team can win 40 games, last year they won 32 in a shortened season and i honestly think this team is better all around then last years team(especially if our rookies work out), plus there is actually a pre-season and time to build chemistry and work with players individually.
  • bob schmidt says 2 YEARs ago Having seen most of the preseason games so far via video streams and last nite's broadcast on NBA channel, several things have surprised me favorably.

    1. Despite fielding so many rookies and new people, turnovers have not been excessive. The entire team seems to have pretty decent hands and good sense of how to play the game. In addition, defense has been quite good at some point in each game. With the athleticism of our team, we have potential to surprise many teams expecting us to be a lesser team than we will be.

    2. From an injury viewpoint, this roster has many interchangable parts. If someone is injured or out for whatever reason, we won't have the kinds of problems of most teams who depend on one or two key players for their wins. Our offense has lots of potential that may steal us games that we were expected to lose.

    3. Call me crazy if you want, I don't care, but I see this team winning at least 32 games, with possibilities of playing .500 ball for the season. Since every season has its surprises, unexpected injuries, and youngsters who suddenly become emerging stars, who is to say?
  • Alituro says 2 YEARs ago I don't see us having our rotations locked down and consistent until sometime in March. This same roster may be capable of nearing 40 wins next year, this year though the learning process is too steep and there are too many teams in the west that may not be good, but have their rotations figured out and their chemistry has settled in for the most part. While there may be a couple teams in the West we are better than, there will be no easy battles this season, with anyone. My win prediction, even through my rockets goggles is an optimistic 26.
  • Rahat Huq says 2 YEARs ago Maybe I'm overrating the team but I feel they'll win more games than most of you are saying. I think 30 for sure.
  • Stephen says 2 YEARs ago @ 35 wins,assuming no major injuries.

    The West being so much more competitive may end up helping the Rockets. W/other Western teams being tired out from numerous close games,a running Rockets team can steal several wins from tired teams.

    The Rockets are ridiculously young and young teams are far better at home than on the road. I expect the Rockets to end up a little over .500 at home. If they win just 1/4 of their road games that's close to 35. And as season ends and teams start playing out the string,the Rocket kids should still have energy and will likely go on a nice run at end of season.

    Lin was the closer is his run,if he can come close to replicating that,he's the closer the team needs.(And his ability to draw fouls late will be huge.)

    Teams definitely worse-Charlotte,Cleveland,Orlando,Washington,NO.
    Teams likely worse-Detroit,Sacramento,Portland(not sold on their new coach,Lillard can't play D and their bench reeks).
    Teams likely on a par w/Houston,but my Rocket goggles leads me to believe Rockets are slightly better than-Milwaukee,Phoenix.
    I like Toronto to just miss Play-Offs if Bynum is healthy,but make it if he misses significant time.
    Minn and Utah will duel for 8 spot,depending on Rubio's health. And I have a sneaking suspicion Utah is going to fall back some this yr.
    And to be honest I believe Denver will have chemistry issues that could end up hurting their season,just not enough to knock them out of Play-Offs.
    The Rockets end up somewhere around 10-12 in the Draft,which is problematic as this 2013 Draft doesn't look very deep.
  • rockets best fan says 2 YEARs ago

    Jeby, on 15 October 2012 - 02:09 AM said:


    I didn't say that was my expectation, I said it was a possibility.
    The NBA is a place where whole dynasties can be put on hold by a rolled ankle, Dwight Howard can be stopped by Jason Collins, and Brad Miller can be an All-star.
    So do I think it's a little overboard to say it's possible for a guy who went from the D-League to upstaging the entire sports universe a few months ago to lead a team to 40 wins? No.

    Jeby, on 15 October 2012 - 02:09 AM said:


    I didn't say that was my expectation, I said it was a possibility.
    The NBA is a place where whole dynasties can be put on hold by a rolled ankle, Dwight Howard can be stopped by Jason Collins, and Brad Miller can be an All-star.
    So do I think it's a little overboard to say it's possible for a guy who went from the D-League to upstaging the entire sports universe a few months ago to lead a team to 40 wins? No.
    every man is entitled to his opinion, but I just don't see it.
  • Jeby says 2 YEARs ago I didn't say that was my expectation, I said it was a possibility.
    The NBA is a place where whole dynasties can be put on hold by a rolled ankle, Dwight Howard can be stopped by Jason Collins, and Brad Miller can be an All-star.
    So do I think it's a little overboard to say it's possible for a guy who went from the D-League to upstaging the entire sports universe a few months ago to lead a team to 40 wins? No.
  • rockets best fan says 2 YEARs ago

    Jeby, on 13 October 2012 - 20:58 PM said:


    I would say more like 40 wins are possible, but my expectation is around 30 wins.
    The thing that makes the team wildly unpredictable (to me) is that it's entirely possible for Lin to break out as an All-star, and for one or two of our young guys (Patterson, Jones, Lamb, Parsons, White, Motiejunas, Morris) to emerge as very good. If that happens and the guys gel, then we'd look like Nuggets 2.0, which is a team that can steal a TON of games.
    Or none of our players reach their potential, and we are Kings-minus-Cousins.
    In scenario A, Morey tries to sell high on those guys and trades for a Superstar. In scenario B, we get a high lottery pick.
    40 wins? really? when I look at the lakers, clippers, okc, memphis, SA, dallas, denver and minny I see very few wins in addition to teams we might split the season series with like the suns, utah, gloden state, NO, sac, portland, and that's not even taking into account the teams we must play 2 times like NY, boston, the bulls, miami, brooklyn, atl, philly. I like to think I look at the glass half full to, but 40 is a little overboard don't you think?
  • Johnny Rocket says 2 YEARs ago Jeby--that strikes me as eminently reasonable. I like either scenario A or B, which is why this is such a fun season--even if we are very bad, we lose, and every game has meaning in terms of the development of our young guys. Their will always be something to watch for.
  • Jeby says 2 YEARs ago I would say more like 40 wins are possible, but my expectation is around 30 wins.
    The thing that makes the team wildly unpredictable (to me) is that it's entirely possible for Lin to break out as an All-star, and for one or two of our young guys (Patterson, Jones, Lamb, Parsons, White, Motiejunas, Morris) to emerge as very good. If that happens and the guys gel, then we'd look like Nuggets 2.0, which is a team that can steal a TON of games.
    Or none of our players reach their potential, and we are Kings-minus-Cousins.
    In scenario A, Morey tries to sell high on those guys and trades for a Superstar. In scenario B, we get a high lottery pick.
  • blakecouey says 2 YEARs ago 26 - 56. The only two teams I can guarantee us being better than are the Bobcats and the Kings. Although I hope Toronto is right there.

    30 wins is possible, it all depends on how the team matures.
  • tombrokeoff says 2 YEARs ago im gonna say 29-53 but hope for better than that
  • Rahat Huq says 2 YEARs ago 82-0 is definitely still mathematically possible.
  • sircharles says 2 YEARs ago undefeated?
  • Huangjean says 2 YEARs ago I agree with the writer that there was no chemistry in last game. The most obviousest sign was on when Lin stole the ball, he just brought it to the paint erea and no any other Rockets accompanied. It's so different from in Knicks. Last game, Lin is the starting floor manager for sure, but I couldn't see any tracts tailored for fitting his talent. What a pity!!
  • Johnny Rocket says 2 YEARs ago Allow me to play the role of the ridiculous optimist and say 35-40 wins, and that we'll compete for the 8th seed in a vague sort of way (3-4 games out; close enough to dream, but but ultimately not close enough to seal the deal). Here's my reasoning:

    1) There is good reason to expect that Parsons, with a full off-season to prepare, will be far better than last year.
    2) Asik looks great and seems set to take the next leap forward now that he's a starter. He'll be a huge upgrade over last year's centers.
    3) I don't know how good Patterson will ultimately be, but he's bound to be much improved over last year.
    4) The combination of Patterson and Jones at the 4 is a huge defensive upgrade over Scola, even though we'll lose something on offense.
    5) Martin is set to become a borderline All-Star; he's healthy, playing for a contract, and has something to prove.
    6)The rookies will have ups and downs, but they will come off the bench in generally low-pressure situations. Most of the minutes will be played by "young veterans" (Asik, Lin, Patterson, Parsons) and a few "older veterans" (Delfino, Martin).
    7) We'll be less deep at point guard than last year, but Lin will be just as a good as either of last year's starters.

    To compare with last year's team: 1) far better overall team defense; 2) marked improvement at shooting guard, center, and shooting forward; 3) less scoring at the four, but better defense; and 5) a younger, inexperienced, but ultimately more talented bench.


    Forty wins can be had, though if injury strikes any of the starters, then 25-30 is indeed in the ballpark.
  • ale11 says 2 YEARs ago I was optimistic last time we talked about this exact same thing, but right now I'm not so sure....I thought something between 30 and 35 (not even close to be enough in the West), but now I'm inclining to something between 20 and 25. And the main reason is that we might get blown with our second unit. Motie hasn't showed that he can play consistent defense, and we are talking about him playing minutes at the 5....right now, the only player who seems to be above average defensively is Asik, and he's not used to play 35-40 minutes every night, and having to take care of everyone on the opposite team is going to make him foul-troubled almost every single night. That can't be good for us at any level....

    Answering to Rahat's second question: Charlotte, maybe NOLA, maybe Sacramento, not sure about Washington yet and....Toronto hopefully
  • rockets best fan says 2 YEARs ago I see this team winning about 20 to 25 games. rookies are inconsistant. while I expect to see flashes of great play, I also expect to see some not so good play. martin is a player who can get you 20 a night, but none in the last 3 minutes. we don't have a closer and without that we will lose a lot of games in the 4th period. the western conference is much improved and will be a dog fight this year. I don't see us winning any season series with the top or even middle of the pack teams this year. to say we could win 30-35 games is not being realistic while looking at the teams we must face. young teams struggle, that's just the way it is. it takes time to learn the nba game. I expect us to be better at the end of the season simply because our rooks will have started to adjust to the way the game is played. so i'm not fooling myself hoping for the playoffs or a year of falling just short of the playoffs. we will struggle, but from struggle the metal is forged to build champions........go rockets!!!!!!!!!!
  • Sir Thursday says 2 YEARs ago I see 30 games as a ceiling unless we get ridiculous levels of play from our rookies. The lack of experience on our roster is going to be a devastating handicap once the season begins, and I see us losing a lot of games in the 4th quarter.

    Looking at our starting lineup, we've only really got one guy (Martin) who we can count on to score. Maybe two if Lin can recapture last year's form, but I see him regressing to the mean a bit. It's not a terrible lineup by any means, and having Asik around will keep our defence good enough to avoid getting blown away by other team's starters, but we're very rarely going to be able to generate a significant advantage of our own with those guys on the floor.

    Then when you take Asik off the floor I do not have high hopes for our defence. We might be able to get away with a little bit if McHale can put some unusual lineup combinations on the floor to create some awkward matchups (I think we have the personnel to at least try this), but in the long run we are going to have to run and gun and hope for the best. Half court teams are going to kill our backups this year.

    So yeah, I think our victory total will be in the 25-30 range (and I feel like I'm being a little optimistic with that). There is absolutely no reason whatsoever to be talking about playoffs with this roster - we have nowhere near the necessary quality for that.

    ST
  • Rahat Huq says 2 YEARs ago That's an interesting way to look at. How many teams are the Rockets for sure better than?
  • LMAOwais says 2 YEARs ago i don't know, but more than the bobcats.

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