Tonight marks the end of Houston’s second-to-last back-to-back (that’s a lot of hyphens). The Rockets conclude their season with a back-to-back against the Lakers and Kings.
Finally, the Houston Rockets get to play a team not fighting for a playoff spot. In fact, the Atlanta Hawks are fine just losing more and more games. The Hawks sit with the third worst record in the league and an inside track at grabbing one of the potential franchise players available in this year’s draft.
Atlanta has been able to feature some of their young talent this season, and John Collins, Taurean Prince, and Tyler Dorsey have been some of the beneficiaries. While some struggling teams try to appease the fanbase by bringing in veterans to make the team look more aesthetically pleasing, the Hawks have embraced the tank, which is exactly what they should do. We’ve seen for years and years across basically every sport that the best way to create a contender is to tank and draft well in big spots. The Hawks are on the right path.
The Rockets will look to give Chris Paul and Luc Richard Mbah a Moute another night off. Against the Pelicans last night, no starter played more than 31 minutes. As much as we criticized Mike D’Antoni last year for refusing to rest guys down the stretch or only playing eight guys every night, MDA has shown that given the talent, he’s got no problem resting key players.
Tip-off is at 7pm CT