Spurs vs Rockets Game 2 preview
What a slaughtering we all saw on Monday night. I know some people are very optimistic about this Spurs team, but even they can agree that this was unusually uncharacteristic of the Spurs. The Rockets looked invincible having the Spurs basically run circles trying to trap Harden and having to answer for anything Houston threw at them.
At the end of the final buzzer the final score read 126-99 and yeah that pretty much summed up the whole game. It wasn’t even close from the opening whistle. James Harden looked like the real MVP here finishing with a double-double scoring 20 points and dishing out 14 assists. Clint Capela also had a double-double scoring 20 points and was an absolute rebound monster with 13. Trevor Ariza put up 25 points, and Ryan Anderson had 14. No matter who had the ball for Houston they scored at a rapid pace. If you think that sounds bad, over 60 points were scored beyond the arc alone with Houston hitting 22-for-50 three-pointers.
Getting thrashed in front of their home crowd the Spurs still come off as calm. And rightfully so, no need to panic after Game 1 regardless of the outcome. The Spurs have numerous veterans who have been here before and have the championships to prove it, but going into Game 2 tonight they’re going to need numerous guys not named Kawhi Leonard to put up points and play some defense. Lamarcus Aldridge had a lousy four points and that type of play is uncalled for with the money he’s getting. The Spurs just looked lost on both sides of the ball and never got it together. The starting five combined for just 48 points—21 of those belonged to Leonard and that was pretty much it.
I expect a much closer Game 2 and expect the Spurs to even up the series before they head to Houston for Game 3. Of course if Houston goes up 2-0 the Spurs should start panicking immediately, but expect a huge game from Aldridge in Game 2. Maybe that “heart to heart” with Tim Duncan can at least motivate him enough to play like he cares, and expect more productivity for role players like Patty Mills and Jonathan Simmons. For the Rockets there’s nothing much for them to change, if they can basically repeat what they did in Game 1 and gas out the Spurs early this series can be over earlier than we predicted.