Here we are again talking about another Houston Rockets win. Hoston went into 'enemy" terriorty and just destroyed the Los Angeles Clippers. James Harden completely disrespected the Clippers all night, including poor Wesely Johnson. Wesley Johnson was crossed into the future by Harden. Here' take a look:
Harden then actually took his shooting hand off the ball as he stood stationary, as if to casually admire the humiliation that had ensued.
"I was just trying to figure out what he was doing," Harden said. "I was going to shoot it, but I was waiting to see, to figure out what was going on. I was confused. Like did the ref call side out of bounds?"
Still surrounded by open space, Harden toggled back to the task at hand. He placed his left hand back on the ball as Clippers guard Milos Teodosic scampered toward him for a half-hearted close-out attempt, then Hadren launched a silky jumper that put the Rockets up 31-7.
"It was a great move," Rockets teammate Eric Gordon said. "Of course, it was crazy. You don't see things like that all the time. I definitely laughed. Everybody is going to be talking about that for a while."
The lead would narrow to as little as eight points, but the Rockets held off a scrappy Clippers squad to prevail 105-92 at Staples Center and notch their 14th consecutive win. In the process, Houston, now 48-13, maintained its half-game lead over the Golden State Warriors in the Western Conference standings.
Here's two paragraph's from ESPN, which i thought was quite interesting: Wednesday night wasn't a flawless exhibition of Rockets basketball. About an hour after Harden's conquest, coach Mike D'Antoni marched onto the floor and lit into his team, which had coughed up a 15-3 run during a string of four possessions featuring three careless turnovers.
The Rockets have been playing at the league's slowest pace over the course of their month-long winning streak, an almost unthinkable statistic for a team coached by D'Antoni and assembled by general manager Daryl Morey. But this improbable feature underscores how dangerous the Rockets are as currently constituted.
"We're not just winning one way," Harden said. "We're winning a variety of ways. That's what it's going to take in the postseason."
For most NBA teams, a brisk pace against a backpedaling defense that isn't set helps players find quality shots. The Rockets' offensive ingenuity is their uncanny ability, demonstrated over the past month, that they can rely on the more deliberate pick-you-apart inclinations of Chris Paul and Harden, and still find their sensible diet of 3-pointers, point-range shots at the rim and regular trips to the foul line.
During the streak, Houston has ranked third in quantified shot probability, a metric by Second Spectrum that measures the likelihood of a shot going down when taking into account both the shot quality and the shooter. And though isolation basketball traditionally has been anathema to teams coached by D'Antoni, whose coaching mantra is "the ball finds energy," the Rockets are far and away the most iso-reliant team in the NBA -- and by far the most efficient with 1.12 points per direct isolation play. (No other team in the league has scored even better than 1.00 per direct iso during the streak.)
True to form, the Rockets attempted only four field goal attempts outside the key but inside the arc on Wednesday, with Harden attempting zero. He finished with an efficient, workmanlike 25 points on 7-for-14 shooting from the field (including 3-of-10 from deep), going 8-for-9 from the field. BTW, Houston is currently on an 14-game win streak