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Preview - Rockets vs Warriors – Better Late Than Never Edition

Game 19





Help!  I can't make the wee pictures work!

December 3, 2009

9:00 PM CST

Oracle Arena (home of the Delphic Basketball Oracle)

Oakland, CA

Aaron Brooks


Stephen Curry

Trevor Ariza


Monta Ellis

Shane Battier


C Maggette

Luis Scola


V Radmanovic

Chuck Hayes


Mikki Moore(dtd)

Carl Landry

Key Reserve

A Randolph


Key Injuries


Tracy McGrady

A Biedrins/R Turiaf?

Team Records:  Warriors 6-11, Rockets 10-8

Tonight we revisit the ongoing soap opera that is the Golden State Warriors.  So much talent.  So much drama.  So little defense.  So much Don Nelson, wandering around, drinking scotch, and alienating people.

 The Warriors are coming off a big loss to Denver, while the Rockets pulled away from the LA Clippers with a strong 4th quarter showing, turning a tight game into a cakewalk in the space of 8 minutes.

When we last saw the Warriors, again on the 2nd game of a West Coast back-to-back, they featured Stephen Jackson.  Jackson, after much public outcry, whingeing, hand wringing and hoopla, is now a Bobcat.  Coming to the Warriors is Vladimir Randmanovic - a man who can truthfully boast one of the worst contracts in the NBA, which is saying something.  The Warriors also feature man-child Anthony Randolph - a player I think should become a Rocket, if only to get back to Texas.

No one played that much in last night's win against LAC, with what we call our "2nd Unit" closing out the game, and the opponent.  This is to say, the Rockets have the bench to run up and down with the Warriors on the 2nd night of a back-to-back.

I think the Rockets can largely keep up with the Warriors scoring, and certainly play a lot more defense.  If the Warriors can't field Biedrins or Turiaf, Randolph, Moore and Radmanovic might have a tough job holding down Scola and Landry.

Monta Ellis has been on fire recently, effectively winning some games himself.  The Rockets need to stop this from happening in order to win tonight.


Let's look at the match-ups:

PG - Brooks v Curry

As a rookie, Curry has looked great, and not so great, sometimes in the same quarter.  Brooks tore up LAC last night, before giving way to the more physical game of Lowry.  Edge - Rockets

SG - Ariza v Ellis

Ellis has been on a tear lately, totally destroying the opposition at times.  Ariza has been playing better lately, driving and dunking, while still playing good D.   We'll see if he can slow Ellis down.

Edge - Warriors

SF - Battier v Maggette

Maggette remains a great enigma of the NBA.  Sometimes when you see him play, you think he should  dominate the league.  But he never really has - injuries, the wrong situation have slowed him down.  I think Battier will too.

Edge - Warriors

PF - Scola/Landry v Radmanovic/Randolph

Radmanovic is...not as bad as you might think he is.  If you don't watch the Rockets, you'll be surprised to learn that Landry is much better than you thought he was.  Scola seemed to be bothered by his shop goggles last night.  Let's hope he's found the old school "bug type" goggles.  Randolph might go insane and fill up the stat sheet. He might go insane and spend the night on the bench.

Edge - Rockets

C - Hayes v Moore

Wow.  Without Biedrins and possibly Turiaf, this looks sort of scary for the Warriors.  I'll say now that we're going to see a lot of Andersen. 

Edge - Rockets

Rockets by 10

The Opposing Blog