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Game thread: Rockets at Thunder

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The Rockets kick off their preseason schedule tonight on NBATV.

NBA: Playoffs-Oklahoma City Thunder at Houston Rockets Thomas B. Shea-USA TODAY Sports

Yes, indeed, it’s that time again.

I’m pretty happy to be putting up the first game thread of the season, and though it’s just the preseason, it feels like a much bigger deal than that.

First, we’ll get our initial look at what the newly acquired Chris Paul looks like playing alongside James Harden after a summer full of pick-up ball shenanigans. Let’s see how much it paid off and how in sync the duo is this evening.

Second, the Rockets are matching up with the Oklahoma City Thunder, the team they quickly knocked out of the playoffs last year in just 5 games. The Thunder went out and made some significant moves in the offseason, adding Paul George and swiping Carmelo Anthony out from under the Rockets’ noses.

With Russell Westbrook not playing tonight, how will the Rockets handle the Thunder’s new dynamic duo?

And finally, head coach Mike D’Antoni has said tonight will essentially be a rotation dress rehearsal. The starters might not play full minutes, but at least early, the rotations are expected to resemble what we’ll be seeing once the regular season begins. There’s only five preseason games this season, so it’s imperative that the Rockets hit the ground running.

Tonight’s game tips at 7:00pm CST and is being shown nationwide on NBATV. So eat, drink, be merry — after a long but eventful offseason, Rockets basketball is finally upon us.