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Houston Rockets vs. Utah Jazz game preview

NBA: Houston Rockets at Utah Jazz Russ Isabella-USA TODAY Sports

This is a big game for Houston for several reasons, and none are difficult to guess.

For one thing, Houston can get back to above .500 with a win for the first time since November 24 when they lost embarrassingly to the Cleveland Cavaliers. That would be a big step for a team and a chance to put the bad start behind them for good.

Secondly, the Jazz won both of the first two games against the Rockets, so this game could clinch the tiebreaker between these rivals. While neither team is in the playoff standings currently (Houston is 12th and Utah is 13th), the West is so tightly packed (fourteen teams within 6.5 games of each other) and these two teams are too talented to believe that neither squad will be a force in April and beyond.

Finally, Houston can exact some revenge on the Jazz for the loss from two weeks ago. When these teams last met, the Jazz lost Rudy Gobert early in the first quarter. What could have been an easy win for Houston turned into a blowout for the Jazz. The Rockets were down 35 after three quarters.

So this game will once again tell us something about the Rockets. Are they back? Or are we going to start this “win some games, lose some games” cycle that has plagued Houston since the season started?

Tip-off is at 7pm CT on NBA TV