Rockets Run On Empty, Fall To Surging Suns, 99-86

Mar. 18, 2012; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Houston Rockets guard Courtney Lee (5) reacts while playing against the Phoenix Suns during the first half at the US Airways Center. Mandatory Credit: Jennifer Stewart-US PRESSWIRE.

Sometimes, Michael Redd has to come off the bench and score 25 points on thirteen shots. It says so in Larry Coon's Salary Cap FAQ. Shame on you for not having found it.

The Rockets jumped out to a 6-0 lead early in Phoenix, but the Suns went on a 13-0 run in return and never looked back en route to a 99-86 home victory. Led by Redd, Marcin Gortat and the surprisingly paint-prowling Channing Frye, the Suns never let their guard down and hit enough shots to keep the exhausted Rockets at bay. Houston didn't have any legs tonight and it showed — they finished 1-11 from behind the three-point line, missed seven free throws and committed sixteen mostly lazy turnovers.

Luis Scola fought hard from the start, finishing with 18 points and 7 rebounds. Goran Dragic put in another solid stat line with 16 points and eight assists, but he also recorded four turnovers and at times was playing five steps ahead of the rest of the offense. Patrick Patterson also provided some much-needed energy off the bench, adding 13 points.

On the downside, Courtney Lee finished 0-8 from the field, reminding us that no matter how much crap we give Kevin Martin sometimes, anyone is capable of a poor night, and there was nobody hotter of late than Lee. Chase Budinger knocked down a few shots toward the end but played fairly brutally through out. Chandler Parsons and Marcus Morris made some passes and stuff.

Three thoughts to send you on your way...

1. Marcus Camby Came To Play

In his first game with the Rockets, Marcus Camby did exactly what Houston brought him in to do. He finished with 8 points and 8 rebounds in nineteen minutes off the bench and looked fairly active throughout. He also showed some real nice hands catching a sweet pass from Dragic in the lane. Kudos to Camby for making such a smooth transition.

2. Marcus Morris, The Hesitant

We're still not seeing the assertiveness from Marcus Morris that I think he needs to bring. He did catch the ball a few times in the post tonight, but on multiple occasions he simply held the ball and seemingly waited for the double team to come, resulting in a pass out of the post. He did make one nice fadeaway shot, but I think the main thing with Marcus is this: We know he has plenty of polish and physical tools, but it looks as if he desperately needs to add the mental drive.

3. Courtney Fortson Is Lil Wayne

I beg you to differ. Show no mercy in Murcielago's, Mr. Fortson.

Final Word

This game really, really sucked, if only because the Suns now gain a leg up on Houston in the playoff race. The offense was dreadful, and it's clear that sometimes when you throw a bunch of guys on the court who can run plays but not necessarily make plays, things won't always go your way. It then becomes worse when those players run a seemingly play-less system. When it gets bad, it gets bad. That's why this team's hope, for now, may be Kevin Martin. He's not the biggest playmaker out there but he's another piece, and he's capable of heating up on any given night.

Rockets Record: 24-22

Bright Side Of The Sun

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