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Three takeaways from Rockets 129-114 loss to Mavericks

It looks that revenge game never happened...

NBA: Houston Rockets at Dallas Mavericks Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports

If you’re reading this than you already know about last night’s shellacking that the Houston Rockets were given by the Dallas Mavericks. We don’t need to open old wounds, nor do we want to go and traverse a salt mine.

Instead, let's take take a different approach and take a look a three key takeaways from last night.

Three Key Takeaways

Eric Gordon

I don’t know about you, but seriously, this time the Rockets have to send Gordon to a contender. Last night’s campaign against Dallas was just the final nail in the coffin.

In 27 minutes of play Gordon logged 4 points on 0-for-7 shooting, 1 assist and 3 rebounds with a -13 plus/minus differential.

I hate to say it, but he looked like he was running suicides on the court last night.

Much can be said if he’s not good anymore or he’s just mailing it in. However, one thing is for sure, it’s about time for Houston to cut their losses on ex Sixth Man of The Year and give that time to young guys in the rotation.

Jabari Smith Jr.

Jabari Smith Jr. had himself a great first half, especially in the first quarter where he busted the Mavs’ zone defense all by himself.

Don’t believe me!? 14 of his 16 points came in the very same quarter.

Smith was very deliberate, decisive and precise on his approach, as he went 5-for-5 in the mid-range.

Although, he was feasting with the in-between game. Smith was 0-for-4 from three-point range and only recorded two points in the second half.

Regardless of his Jekyll-and-Hyde-like performance in respective to the two halves, it is encouraging from the 2022 third overall pick. Jabari is starting to feel comfortable putting his imprint on the game from an offensive standpoint.

Houston’s non-existent transition defense

The Rockets have been putrid on defense all season, and to be fair, that’s expected with a young team whose average age is 23.5 (second youngest team in the league).

Although, this may support the old adage that young teams don’t win.

Having a combo of being ranked 28th in defense (117ppg) along with being ranked 30th in transition defense (26ppg) is just bad vibes.

That allows a team like the Dallas to be able to perform nasty work, like for example score 25 fast break points. if the Rockets want to have to win games, they must clean that up.