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Rockets can’t dig out of hole against Clippers

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Back to the losers column we go.

Houston Rockets v LA Clippers Photo by Adam Pantozzi/NBAE via Getty Images

If we had kindly asked the referees to stop the count after the first quarter, the Rockets would have been winners tonight.

Unfortunately, despite a double-digit first quarter lead, the team fell by 17 points tonight against the Los Angeles Clippers.

Final score: Clippers 126, Rockets 109

The Rockets jumped out to a big lead in the first quarter with a 15-2 run that put the Rockets up double digits early on.

Then, the wheels fell off rather quickly in the second quarter with a 25-3 Clippers run that nearly kicked the Rockets out of the gym.

Yet, these Rockets, who have played a very tenacious brand of basketball since the NBA Trade Deadline, clawed back and cut the deficit to seven late in the fourth quarter by chipping away slowly at the hole they had dug for themselves.

Unfortunately, the Clippers caught wind and piled the dirt right back on the Rockets to create a sizeable deficit.

Despite the outcome, the Rockets come away with some positives. Sterling Brown and KJ Martin brought energy off the bench along with efficient scoring.

Christian Wood’s presence was felt in the paint, tacking on three blocks to go with his 23 points. And Kevin Porter Jr. is blossoming into quite the passer, logging a career-high 13 assists with his 14 points.

The needle ticked one degree in the right direction today in terms of this team’s development and the chances the Rockets keep their pick continues to remain at the league’s best.

The Rockets play tomorrow night against the Golden State Warriors in San Francisco. Tipoff is at 9 p.m. CT.