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Houston Rockets vs. Los Angeles Lakers game preview

NBA: Houston Rockets at Los Angeles Lakers Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

It fitting that the Houston Rockets are playing the Los Angeles Lakers after Houston’s best win of the season.

Last season, Houston’s best game was debatable, but the overtime win over the Lakers in Houston stands out as a solid contender and is my pick for best win. It showed that the young Rockets weren’t afraid of the NBA’s premier franchise and superstar. Jalen Green continued his torrid post-All-Star Game play. Things were looking up.

It’s mostly been disappointment since then, but the win over the Boston Celtics was huge. It showed that Houston wasn’t afraid of one of the true contenders or their superstars. Jabari Smith has continued his torrid post-All-Star Game play. And yes, things are looking up.

Every game for LA is a must-win now as they try to stay in the hunt for a play-in spot. They’re without the injured LeBron James, who is dealing with a tendon injury in his foot and will miss another week at least. As I type this, the Lakers are in a three-way tie for ninth place in the West, and they are playing one of the other teams with identical 33-35 records in New Orleans tonight. That gives Houston the advantage in terms of rest and freedom of play. It should be a good one.

Also, Anthony Davis will be out.

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