The Houston Rockets look to build off a devastating first-half of basketball in Game 1 and prove that their second-half letdown was more a function of taking their foot off the pedal than of the Utah Jazz figuring anything out.
Remember, the Rockets still won that game by 14 despite coming out sluggish after the break, so it’ll be on the Jazz to prove they can hang with the Rockets at the Toyota Center.
The Jazz will be fully rested after a three-day break, so we can be sure we’ll be getting their best shot after a “tired legs” excuse was floated as a major reason for their subpar performance in Game 1.
For the Rockets, we’ll be seeing some more Luc Mbah a Moute tonight, after he played 21 minutes his first game back from a shoulder injury in Game 1.
Coach Mike D’Antoni says Luc Mbah a Moute will get extended minutes tonight as he works his way back into the regular rotation #Rockets— Kelly Iko (@KellyIkoNBA) May 2, 2018
I expect the Jazz to come out firing to start the game in hopes of setting the early tone trying to avenging their defeat, and it’ll be on the Rockets to play with the intensity we saw in the first half of Game 1 and tighten up the poor transition defense we saw in the second half.
James Harden will reportedly be matched up against Dante Exum tonight, with the Jazz hoping that the 6’6” guard can bother Harden with his length, while The Beard will likely look to keep things moving fast to avoid the Utah half-court defense.
Catch the game preview if you haven’t already.
Go, Rockets! Let’s hold the home court.