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@  Cooper : (22 January 2015 - 07:05 AM) Need to find or develop a second weapon on offense dwight has too many matchup limitations.
@  Matt Maloney... : (22 January 2015 - 06:13 AM) Silver Lining: SHVED looks more that cap filler.
@  Matt Maloney... : (22 January 2015 - 06:12 AM) So... EYE TEST tells me that we were playing better Defense when we had that Tarik Black and Joey Dorsey splitting minutes.
@  Mario Peña : (22 January 2015 - 06:09 AM) Looks like we should have seen more Brewer and Dorsey and less Ariza and Smith. I wonder what impact Jones could have had.
@  Mario Peña : (22 January 2015 - 05:57 AM) Jet!!!
@  Matt Maloney... : (22 January 2015 - 05:39 AM) lets go small and jack up threes
@  Matt Maloney... : (22 January 2015 - 05:38 AM) Can we say screw it? Harden, Brewer, Ariza, Dmo, K-Pap
@  Mario Peña : (22 January 2015 - 05:38 AM) Harden can't do it alone. The Warriors are just better right now on most nights. I think the Rockets are about a year behind the Warriors when it comes to continuity.
@  thenit : (22 January 2015 - 05:31 AM) its a massacre,tough to swallow with two of these in a week. luckily the west is stacked and its all about matchups
@  cointurtlemoose : (22 January 2015 - 04:40 AM) Okay now we're kinda getting pooped on...
@  Matt Maloney... : (22 January 2015 - 04:29 AM) Warriors are having too much fun
@  Matt Maloney... : (22 January 2015 - 04:29 AM) We have to dirty this game up!
@  jorgeaam : (16 January 2015 - 01:45 AM) Wow, Rockets leading 40-18 after 1Q against OKC
@  cointurtlemoose : (15 January 2015 - 04:15 AM) And we seemed to be fighting lethargy on our D all night, and too heavily depending on rim protection that had been dragged out of the paint via Vucevic. Oh, and turnovers.
@  cointurtlemoose : (15 January 2015 - 04:13 AM) Coming off of that CHI win, Orlando was clicking; I was actually kinda impressed.
@  Mario Peña : (15 January 2015 - 03:52 AM) What happened? I just got home from work and see the Rockets lost to Orlando.
@  jorgeaam : (13 January 2015 - 06:15 AM) What were you expecting? He's been a poor shooter all his career :P
@  SadLakerFan : (13 January 2015 - 04:54 AM) Maybe Smith was a good pickup after all. In the 4 games since Boston Rondo is 7-37 (18.9%), 0 FT, )3PG. Atrocious.
@  jorgeaam : (10 January 2015 - 07:53 PM) The Knicks are losing 89-44 trough 3 quarters today
@  cointurtlemoose : (10 January 2015 - 07:25 PM) Shoutout to Tarik having a monster 17 min for the Lakers last night!


OKC Thunder 101, Houston Rockets 112: James Harden is very good at basketball.

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#1 Mitchell Felker

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    Posted 16 January 2015 - 01:18 PM

    Messed up posting the article, so there is no thread for it. What'd you guys think of the game last night?

    Edit: here is the article below.

    OKC Thunder 101, Houston Rockets 112: James Harden is very good at basketball.
    By Mitchell Felker

    I don’t know when these games against the Oklahoma City Thunder will stop feeling like a chance at retribution for James Harden, but that time was certainly not last night.

    Watching Harden square up against his old teammates is always exciting because it still conjures up feelings of what could have (should have?) been for the Thunder. Typically, Harden feels like the underdog in these match-ups with his more acclaimed ex-teammates; the third banana gone rogue. But this year has been different, with Harden playing at a pace-setting MVP level, and the Durant/Westbrook combo stuck in second gear after injuries derailed both their first quarter-season.

    On a night when the Rockets were playing their third game in four nights, traveling up and down the east coast before returning home, Harden was one rebound away from his second triple-double of the season. The Beard easily outclassed Durant and Westbrook, who had just 40 points and 12 turnovers combined (the Rockets had 12 TO’s as a team, Harden only 2) and hadn’t played since last Friday. Some call that rust, I call it rest.

    But even with the Thunder coming in so fresh, the Rockets came out scorching, scoring 40 points in the first quarter (their most in any quarter this season) and leading by 22 after one. In fact, Houston took the lead for good after a James Harden catch-and-shoot 3 made it 7-4 just a little more than two minutes into the first. The Thunder never even got back inside a ten point deficit after the Rockets made it 14-4 with eight minutes still to go in the opening period.

    There wasn’t a defender on OKC who could stay in front of Harden. And even when Serge Ibaka and Russell Westbrook, only two of the most athletic players in the league, trapped on the pick-and-roll, Harden crossed-over and split the defense before jamming it down for the dunk of the night.

    But this wasn’t just about Harden looking like the best player on the floor, it was also about the rest of the roster following his lead. The slash-and-kick was out in full force, with nary a missed extra pass to an open shooter. Dwight Howard couldn’t really find the ball on offense, but Trevor Ariza and Pat Beverley knocked down a few threes while hounding Durant and Westbrook all night. D-Mo was his usual crafty self, dropping in 14 (which could have easily been 20 if he hadn’t missed a few bunnies) and connecting with Dwight on a nice big-to-big alley-oop. Although the real treat was getting to watch Josh Smith do what he was brought to Houston to do.

    J-Smoove only played 19 minutes, but he managed 13 points, 7 rebounds (4 offensive) and 2 assists. Which might not seem like much, but what made it so…relieving?…was how seamless he looked in his role. He still took three shots outside of his range, two missed 3’s and a made 18-footer, but he attacked the basket aggressively, made a few skip passes to the corner shooters, and was a menace on the boards at all times. He even ran a couple nice fast breaks off long rebounds, and played a sweet give-and-go with Papanikolaou for an easy lay-in off a turnover. This is the Josh Smith Daryl Morey was hoping for: stay in your role, fill in the gaps, and defend. There aren’t many teams in the league that have a player of Smith’s ability coming off the bench, and much like Harden’s defense last year, it’s too easy to take potshots at Smith and his (somewhat) overblown narrative.

    Last night was also coach Kevin McHale’s 200th win as a head coach. It’s a nice milestone for a coach that just signed a three year extension last month, and who should pile up many more wins with the future of basketball on his roster. Speaking of the future of basketball, the Rockets shot 16-36 from deep last night, marking the 11th time this season that they have had 15+ 3-pointers in a game this season. Not impressed? On January 15, exactly one month BEFORE the All-Star break, the Rockets already set the NBA record for such games in a single season (Shoutout to EJ for that stat).

    Chuck and Shaq may not believe this team is a true contender, but McHale still has time smooth things over after his roster additions. Plus, if Terrence Jones ever gets right, the Rockets could be adding another starting quality player to an already deep team. And with two of Houston’s next three games coming against the league-leading Golden State Warriors, James Harden will have more chances to prove that he’s the best player on a star-studded court (and prove the big fellas wrong).
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    #2 thejohnnygold



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    Posted 16 January 2015 - 07:04 PM

    I think I wish I had seen it.   :(


    Sadly, I will not be able to watch the Golden State game Saturday either.

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    #3 Losthief


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    Posted 16 January 2015 - 10:29 PM

    It was pretty good, although the aquisition of brook lopez (if it goes through) will change the dynamic of the matchup all-over again. As would the re-addition of terrance jones.


    But a couple things for sure, ariza is really really good a defense and frustrated durant last night, which is hard to do and was impressive. Also, the lessening of minutes seem to be helping him on both ends as his help defense is back to early season form.


    Harden looked, played, and seemed to feel like he was the best player on the court last night. Which I think is a huge mental block/accomplishment he needed. He had great games against the heat, and he had put up big numbers against the thunder. But this was the first time he put them up so efficiently and just seemed to control the game. Huge step imho and probably the last of his OKC day demons to overcome.


    Serge Ibaka was bothered by DMO's length and was regulated to an 3pt shooter, which I think we can live with because even though he's decent it takes away there best offensive rebounder.


    12 TOs is awesome, if we can play in the 10-15 range TOs nightly (instead of 17+) I think we jump back into the top 10 offensively.

    Edited by Losthief, 16 January 2015 - 10:30 PM.

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    I'd Rather Be Lucky Than Skilled

    #4 Mario Peña

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    Posted 17 January 2015 - 09:03 PM

    I think I wish I had seen it.   :(
    Sadly, I will not be able to watch the Golden State game Saturday either.

    If you have time check nba games replayed at nbaliveonline.tv because that OKC game is well worth watching.
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    Not all isolation plays are equal.

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