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Houston Rockets vs. Atlanta Hawks game preview

NBA: Atlanta Hawks at Houston Rockets Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports

The Atlanta Hawks come into town tonight to face the Houston Rockets, who are currently on the upswing of the roller coaster that has been the 2018-19 season.

The Rockets picked up arguably their biggest win of the season by defeating the Golden State Warriors at Oracle Arena. The fact that they won the game without the reigning MVP in James Harden is astounding, and was a surprise to most people.

The biggest revelation of the last few games has been Chris Paul. After missing six weeks or so with another hamstring injury, the Point God then used the All-Star break to hop into the Hyperbolic Time Chamber and show signs that last season’s CP3 might be back. That’s a huge boon for a Rockets squad that looks locked into the bottom half of the standings at the moment as Denver, Oklahoma City, and Portland continue to roll along.

I could spend time talking about how I think the Atlanta Hawks goofed by taking Trae Young over Luka Doncic, but that wouldn’t really be a hot take. What’s important is that Young is averaging 21/9 over his last ten games and is shooting roughly 40% from deep over that same time frame. He’s coming into his own, and if he’s able to continue growing for the foreseeable future, he could become All-Star player that Hawks management thought he could become. Basically, it’s important to wait and remember that Young is only 60 games into his NBA career. He’ll be fine.

The Hawks also feature the size and length on the perimeter that can make Harden’s life more difficult. Kent Bazemore, Taurean Prince, and DeAndre’ Bembry are all players 6-5 or taller that Harden will see thrown at him, if indeed the Beard plays tonight.

Harden is questionable tonight with the same cervical strain and flu symptoms that held him out of the Warriors game, while Iman Shumpert should be available but nothing official has been said as of this writing.

Tip-off is at 7pm CT