After tonight, the Rockets will be barely past the halfway point of the season but 75% of the way through their divisional games. They have each team one more time, with 3 of those games coming at Toyota Center.
The San Antonio Spurs come into tonight's game coming off their worst loss of the season, one of ESPN's patented "Game of the Century of the Week"s against the Golden State Warriors. As the Dubs like to do, they ran through the Spurs to the tune of a 30-point win. Luckily for the Rockets they will get a pissed off Spurs squad looking to get back on track. Yay?
We know the Spurs by now. LaMarcus Aldridge will have a big game because we are the Rockets and he is Bellatrix Lestrange. Danny Chronic won't miss a three against us despite shooting his worst percentage as a pro since his rookie season. Kawhi Leonard something something claw. Tony Parker will be the jittery point guard that murders us. Manu will flop at least once and draw the ire of Rockets fans, who will be unable to say much because the amount of "LOL you root for Harden all he does is flop!" replies will break the Internet.
Also, I gotta ask: if the Warriors lose when Steph doesn't play and everyone goes "Well that proves Steph is the MVP!" then how can you not watch the Spurs-Warriors game and think "Well, that proves Tim Duncan is the MVP!"? The argument behind players' absences proving their worth is a flawed one in many respects. It started in 2005 when Steve Nash missed five games and the Suns lost all five. Nash won the award while injured, essentially. Since then, others have been measured by how poorly (AK's "Nash Factor") or well (Bill Simmons' "Ewing Theory") their teams do in their absence. Right now, we're talking about how Blake Griffin must not be important to the Clippers because they keep winning without him. But do you think the Clippers really don't want him come playoff time?
Houston comes into the game on a 3-game winning streak, coinciding with Josh Smith's return to the team. Smoove's presence has been noticeable in every area except the points column in the box score. He's doing everything else for Houston that the Rockets don't normally do, including nurturing ball movement and actually playing defense.
The 2015-2016 NBA MVP Tim Duncan will miss tonight's game and Dwight Howard is questionable.
As always, Tony must dominate fisher.
Tip-off is at 7pm CST on ESPN.
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