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Houston Rockets vs. Chicago Bulls game preview

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NBA: Houston Rockets at Chicago Bulls Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

We’ve spent weeks talking about rest, and Mike D’Antoni has obliged.

It started with Nene getting five games off. Chris Paul was given three games to rest his hamstring. Ryan Anderson was held out against Atlanta after the team waiting to bring him back in the first place. Luc Richard Mbah a Moute is still on the shelf with a knee issue, but it seems to be more precautionary.

Tonight, LRMAM will be joined by James Harden and Clint Capela on the shelf. The Beard was resolute last season in his dedication to playing all 82 in his quest for MVP. Ironically, he might miss 10 games this year and win the award running away. I could go on one of those tangents about how this season has proven that the media screwed up its vote late season, but then everyone is going to call me a Rockets salty homer.

Anyway, the Bulls will also be missing Zach LaVine, Kris Dunn, Antonio Blakeney, and Paul Zipser are out. Denzel Valentine and Lauri Markkanen are gametime decisions, per K.C. Johnson.

I think tonight will be an ugly game, but one the Rockets should still win. With their magic number for the top overall seed at three with eight games to play, Houston has earned some wiggle room. Still, the team probably wants to be playing well heading into the playoffs. So I expect Houston to try to figure out their playoff rotation during the last week of the season. For now, rest is way more important.

Tip-off is at 7pm CT