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Rockets raze Raptors 135-106

A 48 Minute Layup Line

NBA: Toronto Raptors at Houston Rockets
Go Get Another Layup! Or Dunk!
Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports

Well, that was relaxing. Not at all what was expected. Yes, the Raptors have been worse than the Rockets this season, but not THAT much worse. Not “The Rockets Could Have Scored 150, and Held The Raptors Under 100” worse.

This wasn’t the SEGBABA on the road for Tronno, in fact they hadn’t played since Tuesday, when they beat the Chicago Bulls pretty handily. The Raptors made a trade that seemingly optimized their roster, by adding a quality scoring guard, and turning the frontcourt over to Scottie Barnes. Judging by tonight, it’s clear that Scottie Barnes can really fill it up (in garbage time).

I kid, Barnes is a promising player, and Toronto really seems like they should be better than this. Toronto is one of the best teams scoring in transition in the NBA. Unfortunately for the Canadian team, the Rockets shot nearly 60%, mostly on layups, though they did manage 35% on 31pt shots, as well. It’s hard to get out on the break if the opponent rarely misses.

The Rockets scored 84 points in the paint tonight, which is a lot. How much, though, is it? The current NBA record is 98 points in the paint in a single game (this stat has only been tracked since 1996,). Could the Rockets, if they had left their starters in the game past the third quarter, or had sought to break this record have done so tonight? It seems entirely possible they could have.

There’s honestly not a lot of “game” to break down. More a parade of Rockets highlights and player superlatives. It was relaxing, and fun, if you are a Rockets fan, as this game seemed totally out of hand early in the third quarter.

Tonight both Amen Thompson and Cam Whitmore reached career highs in points.

Cam had 25 points in 21 minutes on 10-17 shooting, along with 6 rebounds, 2 steals, and what?!? an assist. Which to be fair, was a highlight reel behind the back fast break dime to Uncle Jeff Green for a dunk. Cam’s current scoring output as a teenager coming off the bench has only been surpassed (so far) by Kobe Bryant.

When Cam Whitmore was asked post game about the Rockets big second half run he answered

“I think we had a big run the whole game.”

I couldn’t agree more.

Next up? Amen Thompson.

Amen scored 19 points on 9-11 shooting, with 7 rbs, 4 ast, 2 stl, and 1 blk. He was, moreover, simply a menace on defense, and too fast, and too big, for Toronto to contain on offense.

But what about the old guys?

Alperen Sengun hobbled along with 24pts, 13rbs, 8ast. He would have had a triple double, most likely, if the Rockets starters hadn’t sat the whole 4th quarter, with the Rockets up 30ish points.

Jalen Green had a disappointing night, dropping down from the 30 point average of his last five games, to score a mere 14pts, on 7-14 shooting. He did miss all of his four three point attempts, and got no freethrows, as he just kind of went to the basket as he pleased.

Fred VanVleet saw a nice return to shooting form at 4-7, and thankfully (thankfully!) only played 25 minutes.

Like Cam Whitmore, Boban Marjanovic also had a massive per-minute output tonight, scoring 6 points on 2-2 shooting in 4 minutes, as well as grabbing 4 rebounds. He should have been credited with an assist, perhaps, or maybe the lost ball ended up in the hands of (I think) Nate Hinton fortuitously.

Anyhow, all the Rockets had good night, really, except one. Poor Jock Landale couldn’t get in the game tonight, which is odd, as every Rocket played at least 4 minutes. Perhaps he was ill, or slightly injured, or is perhaps a piece of a potential trade. I’d hate to think he’s that much in the doghouse, but if so, I hope he gets out of it.

That’s all from this one. It was over early, and really, a delight to watch.



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