I hope you like numbers...
19. That is the number of blocks that your Houston Rockets accumulated tonight as they sealed a victory against the short-handed Dallas Mavericks. That’s good for a second place tie in team history behind a 20 block performance from 38 years ago to the date on 11/16/84.
30.4. That is the shooting percentage that the Mavs were held to from the floor. It was apparent that Dallas had some tired legs tonight after they squeaked out a narrow victory on Tuesday. Factor that with Luka Doncic taking the night off and that made finding good looks even more tough for the already limited squad.
55. That is the amount of threes Dallas attempted. They only connected on 12 of them, which by my calculations means they only shot 21.8%. Compare that to the drastically more efficient 10-22 night for Houston and it makes a lot of sense how we were able to pull off this victory despite an awful turnover disparity.
56. That’s the amount of rebounds Houston pulled down. That’s 18 more than our Dallas counterparts. The tone was set early by Alperen Sengun as he snatched six in the first quarter and that success continued throughout the evening with a great group effort.
23. This is the amount of reckless turnovers that the Rockets committed. However, they were able to offset these by a surprisingly pleasant defensive effort. Among the culprits were Sengun, Kevin Porter Jr., Jalen Green and Eric Gordon, who contributed for 17 of the miscues. This game would have been a blowout in the Rockets’ favor otherwise.
Besides the turnovers, I will say that this was a solid team victory across the board. The defense showed up on a night where nobody was super spectacular on offense. The team battled back a few times after it seemed they were going to go down the same hole that they tend to find themselves in.
There was a 15-0 run to closeout the first half, highlighted by some awesome Usman Garuba play on both sides of the ball (he hit two threes!) and a Jalen Green buzzer beater. Meanwhile, KPJ nearly posted a triple-double (17-11-8) on his way to hitting some clutch shots down the stretch.
Jabari Smith Jr. struggled with his shot once more, but his value showed up in other spots as he hit the boards and showed off his defensive versatility that made him a high pick.
Kenyon Martin Jr. keeps demonstrating his athleticism and he’s doing it so much so that he picked up a flagrant for kneeing Dwight Powell in the face while dunking the ball. I’ll give KJ the benefit of the doubt in this circumstance, but if it were his pops I think we know where he landed on intent.
As for the Mavs, their woeful offense got the bulk of their contributions from Tim Hardaway Jr.’s 28 and Christian Wood’s 26. It looked to be all smiles from Wood after the game as he congregated with his former Rockets teammates.
I have one last number for you.
3. This is the Rockets’ third victory of the season and boy was it needed. Between frustrated emojis being tweeted on Elon’s internet and late game ejections, Houston was due for a pick-me-up.
Enjoy this win and pick back up with the Rockets as they’re back home versus the Indiana Pacers this Friday at 7:00 PM!