Hard to believe there’s Houston Rockets basketball happening tonight, but here we are. The heroes of our story open up the preseason slate this eveing at the Toyota Center, taking on Yao Ming’s Shanghai Sharks.
It will be a good warm up for the preseason, but we’re unlikely to get a good feel yet for how the Rockets will perform.
Russell Westbrook will sit out tonight’s game. He’s been a minimal participant in training camp so far, as he recovers from an offseason knee procedure. The plan is for Westbrook to return to the lineup when the Rockets head to Tokyo to play the Toronto Raptors in the NBA Japan Games on October 8 and 10, but that plan could change depending on how Westbrook feels, according to Daryl Morey.
The Rockets will also be without Anthony Bennett, who is battling a sore left knee, Michael Frazier, who is nursing an ankle sprain, and Nene, who is currently not with the team. Shamorie Ponds is listed as questionable with a thigh bruise.
Otherwise, Houston has some other new additions to look out for tonight, including veterans Thabo Sefolosha and Tyson Chandler, though it’s unknown how much these guys will play, and it will be interesting to keep an eye on young players like Chris Clemons and Isaiah Hartenstein, to see how much they get on the court at this early stage.
The Sharks are led by Jimmer Fredette and also have former Rocket Luis Scola on the roster.
Tip off is at 7:00pm CST, the game is airing on NBA-TV, and it feels oh, so good to say... Go Rockets!!