Tonight is a big night for the Houston Rockets and Jalen Green.
If Houston can grab a win or if Green can have a big night, Houston’s number 2 overall pick gets folded into the “The Rockets are plucky underdogs with a lot of fun young pieces” narrative that they’ve grabbed since Green went down with an injury. If Houston loses badly AND Green plays poorly, then he’s the reason the team is terrible and they only won seven straight because he was out (nevermind that they then lost six of eight with one of those wins coming against the lowly Pistons).
Doomsday opinions aside, this is a nice game for Green to return. Yes, the Indiana Pacers are 13-19 and 2.5 games out of a play-in spot. Malcolm Brogdon is also questionable with Achilles soreness. But the real positive here is that Houston won’t play again until Monday. Of course, they are met with a back-to-back straight off the Christmas Break. Then they get two days off. Then it’s another back-to-back. Because why not?
Of course, the Pacers still have Caris LeVert, Myles Turner, and Domantas Sabonis. Former Rocket Jeremy Lamb comes off the bench for Indiana.
Mostly, it would be nice to see Green look healthy. That’s the most important thing for a player who has only appeared in 18 games so far.
Tip-off is at 6pm CT on AT&T SportsNet Southwest