The Rockets are starting to get back to last year’s team where they looked like a tough defensive team that had a few superstars to get them a win. After a rough start this season, everyone said how the Rockets would not be able to defend anyone with the loss of Trevor Ariza and Luc Mbah A Moute. However, after the first quarter against a very good Nuggets team that had four losses going into the game, the Rockets held them to 25 points or less in the final three quarters*.
You can tell why they needed to bring back Jeff Bzdelik back to the sidelines to be their defensive coach. The rough start had everyone jumping off of the bandwagon and had questions up and down the roster. Now healthy and away from suspensions, the Rockets have looked crisper on the defensive end. The Rockets have held their opponents in 5 of their last six games under 100 points*. Which is incredible to think about as the Rockets are a team that shoots quick shots and generates a bunch of possessions in the game.
The Rockets are also the beneficiary of the having the MVP of the 2017-2018 NBA Basketball season. James Harden is starting to get back into form last year as he completely took over this basketball game in the second half. At the end of the first half, James Harden was 1 for 5 with only 3 points *, and everyone was beginning to wonder if James Harden was going to show up to the game.
In the 3rd quarter alone, James Harden had eight points and six assists and helped the Rockets to win the 3rd quarter 32-21*. Moreover, just when you thought James Harden would have had enough, he then decided that he was going to close the door completely on the Nuggets and score 11 points in the 4th quarter*. He is starting to get back into form from his hamstring injury, and the Rockets are going to thank him many more times this season.
While James Harden seemingly stole the show, there were quite a few other performers that stepped up and contributed to the win. Clint Capela had a near double-double as he led the Rockets in points and rebounds with 24 points and nine rebounds*. Chris Paul is starting to get his shooting touch back as well as he finished with 21 points*.
The one concern going forward is that the Rockets are getting big minutes from 6 players from their team and getting sparing minutes from a pair of rookies. This could be a problem for the Rockets going forward as they need to find some sort of a rotation and a bench. Hopefully, the Rockets can figure all of this out as they suit them up again against the Warriors on Thursday, November 15th. This should be a fun one!