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Houston Rockets vs. Indiana Pacers game preview

NBA: Houston Rockets at Indiana Pacers Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Just a few days ago, the Rockets were coming off a win against the Pacers in Indiana. They were 3-0 on the longest road trip of the year, Jeff Bzdelik was coming back, and it looked like the Oklahoma City Thunder weren’t going to have Russell Westbrook when the two teams would meet on Thursday.

Fast forward to today, and things don’t look quite as bright in Clutch City. They lost to OKC and then couldn’t hit anything against the Spurs in what might be the most frustrating loss of the season.

There isn’t much to say. Everyone has been bad. From top to bottom, the Rockets have looked unprepared for the season. Honestly, it seems like Houston didn’t get a training camp while everyone else did. They’re timid on offense, even as the defense is playing decently.

This is not Carmelo Anthony’s fault. He hasn’t played well either, but he is not solely to blame for the bad start. His job here was always to be a Ryan Anderson replacement, and he’s done just fine in that role. Maybe the Rockets are looking for a scapegoat. The last time Houston went 4-7 to open a season, they fired Kevin McHale. All signs indicate that the Rockets still really like Mike D’Antoni and it would seem unwise to fire him. So...

Chris Paul has not been the same player he was last season. Father Time comes for all players, but if he chose now to come for CP3, that’s an incredibly tough break for Houston. James Harden has played at a level far below the MVP levels he’s exhibited the last three years. Even Eric Gordon, who can now shoot without the looming specter of a Jimmy Butler trade, went 3-14 from deep against San Antonio.

The Rockets are lost in a maze right now. And Indiana is going to do their best Minotaur impression tonight.

Tip-off is at 6pm CT