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Houston Rockets vs. Washington Wizards game preview

NBA: Washington Wizards at Houston Rockets Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports

Now there’s hope.

Sports have become roller coasters, with so much more emphasis given to results than the overal arc of a team. For weeks, Houston Rockets fans felt like neither results nor developments were progressing in a satisfactory manner.

Most Rockets fans still aren’t convinced, but coming off a win for Houston (their first of 2023), the vibes are at least not as maculate as they had been.

The Washington Wizards are on the second game of a back-to-back, and they come into Toyota Center off an impressive close win over the Mavericks in Dallas. They’re five games under .500, which as always means they’re in the thick of the Eastern Conference playoff race.

Houston is on the first game of a back-to-back. They’ll take on the Cleveland Cavaliers tomorrow night.

The Rockets will be without Kevin Porter Jr. once again. Jabari Smith Jr. is questionable to return. The Wizards are missing Kristaps Porzingis.

The NBA Trade Deadline is two weeks away (February 9), and Houston still has to determine what they want to do with Eric Gordon. Houston wants to continue featuring him, but his minutes should probably be going to some combination or Tari Eason and Jae’Sean Tate. Those two are getting minutes now, but there’s going to be a squeeze if the Juniors come back. That’s not usually an issue that a tanking team has to deal with, but reps are so important and the Rockets need to play their younger players as much as possible (within reason, obviously) moving forward.

Tip-off is at 7pm CT on AT&T SportsNet Southwest