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Houston Rockets vs. Golden State Warriors game preview

NBA: Houston Rockets at Golden State Warriors John Hefti-USA TODAY Sports

After an uneventful All-Star Weekend, the Houston Rockets return to action against the defending NBA champions.

The Golden State Warriors are sitting in the middle of the muck that is the Western Conference. The third and thirteenth teams are separated by just six games. As of this writing, two teams have 28 losses, four have 29, two have 30, and there’s one each at 31 and 32. Not to mention that some of those teams are expecting to bring back stars from injury soon: Kevin Durant, Karl-Anthony Towns, Zion Williamson, and Steph Curry are expected to return from injury in time for the stretch run, and it there could be some upheaval. LeBron James even all-but-confirmed that he’ll be playing in every game for the rest of the season.

And yet, no one worries about the Warriors. Would you bet against them in any series against a Western Conference team? Who’s beating them four times? The Nuggets or Grizzlies? Please. The Mavericks and Suns made big trades to make a play, and the Clippers are at full-strength this season with Kawhi Leonard “back.” Still, it’s going to be difficult for those teams to integrate new ball-stoppers. The Warriors could easily beat the 1994-95 Rockets for lowest seed to win the NBA title.

The only thing that is going to end this Warriors dynasty is someone offering max money for Draymond Green this summer and him being so offended at the Warriors gave his money to Jordan Poole that he bolts.

What do you want to see from the Rockets down the stretch? Maybe Jalen Green comes back and plays at the level he did post-ASB last season. Or maybe Jabari Smith Jr. makes a leap. We’ll see.

Tip-off is at 9pm CT on AT&T SportsNet Southwest