Two days ago, the Houston Rockets’ fourteen-game winning streak came to an end in the hands of the Los Angeles Lakers. They would look to get another winning streak started as they host the Los Angeles Clippers at the Toyota Center. The Clippers, on the other hand, are seeking their second straight win but it will not be easy against the best team in the West. This matchup will mark the first of four games that these two ball clubs will play against each other. The Rockets and the Clippers have met up a total of 204 times with the Rockets winning 125 games while the Clippers won 79 games.
Clint Capela (heel; 14.0 PPG, 11.3 RPG, 1.2 APG, 69.4 FG%, 0.0 3P%)
Luc Mbah a Moute (shoulder; 6.8 PPG, 3.4 RPG, 1.0 APG, 45.8 FG%, 37.3 3P%)
Chris Paul (hip; 17.1 PPG, 5.4 RPG, 9.0 APG, 47.7 FG%, 40.8 3P%)
Troy Williams (knee; 1.3 PPG, 1.0 RPG, 0.3 APG, 22.2 FG%, 0.0 3P%)
Bobby Brown (coach’s decision; 2.6 PPG, 0.4 RPG, 0.6 APG, 31.5 FG%, 28.9 3P%)
Demetrius Jackson (coach’s decision; 0.7 PPG, 0.9 RPG, 0.4 APG, 28.6 FG%, 0.0 3P%)
Zhou Qi (coach’s decision; 1.3 PPG, 0.9 RPG, 0.1 APG, 19.0 FG%, 16.7 3P%)
Chinanu Onuaku (wrist)
Los Angeles Clippers:
Patrick Beverley (knee; 12.2 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 2.9 APG, 40.3 FG%, 40.0 3P%)
Danilo Gallinari (buttocks; 13.4 PPG, 4.4 RPG, 2.6 APG, 34.5 FG%, 25.8 3P%)
Blake Griffin (knee; 23.6 PPG, 7.9 RPG, 5.1 APG, 42.5 FG%, 35.3 3P%)
Wesley Johnson (foot; 6.9 PPG, 3.4 RPG, 1.1 APG, 40.8 FG%, 28.6 3P%)
Milos Teodosic (foot; 8.3 PPG, 3.7 RPG, 4.6 APG, 32.8 FG%, 30.8 3P%)
Brice Johnson (G-League; 1.8 PPG, 1.4 RPG, 0.1 APG, 63.6 FG%, 0.0 3P%)
The Houston Rockets would have full control at the beginning of the game as they shot forty-six percent from the field in the first half, limiting the Clippers to forty percent. James Harden got extremely hot for 30 points which included five three-pointers. He also had four defensive rebounds, four assists, and two steals. Eric Gordon would contribute as he scored 13 points with two three-pointers in the middle of the second quarter. Ryan Anderson managed to get his hands on seven rebounds as he chalked up seven points. Former Suns forward P.J. Tucker played 15 minutes off of the bench but was held scoreless as he grabbed six rebounds.
As for the California team, Lou Williams played the most minutes off of the bench as he chalked up 12 points on forty percent shooting. DeAndre Jordon had nine points along with 13 rebounds and 2 blocks. Austin Rivers contributed with six points with a three-pointer late in the second period but it was the home team that went into halftime with a huge 65-52 advantage.
The Clippers would respond in the second half as they went on a 76-53 run, shooting fifty-six percent from the field while holding the Texas team to forty-eight percent. Austin Rivers would go off for 30 points as he shot fifty-six percent from the field. He would earn 15 of those points from beyond the arc as he dished off four assists. C.J. Williams helped out with seven points while Jordan collected seven rebounds. Lou Williams played 19 minutes off of the bench as he posted up 20 points which held six three-pointers.
James Harden continued to impress as he had 24 additional points on fifty-four percent shooting from the field. Tucker played the most minutes off of the bench but was held to just a three-pointer late in the fourth quarter as the Clippers overcome a 13-point deficit to beat the Rockets, 128-118. Austin Rivers finished with a career-high 36 points, along with 2 rebounds, 7 assists, one steal, and one block. James Harden had 51 points, 4 rebounds, 8 assists, and 3 steals. This would be the second straight game where James Harden has scored 50 or more points, making him the first player in more than a decade to do such.
The Houston Rockets will visit Oklahoma to take on Russell Westbrook (23.3 PPG, 9.5 RPG, 9.7 APG, 40 FG%) and the Oklahoma City Thunder (16-15) on Monday at 8:00 p.m. This will mark the first of three matchups between these two teams this season. The Thunder and the Rockets have battled each other a total of 255 with the Thunder pulling 132 wins while the Rockets ended up winning 123 games.
The Los Angeles Clippers will visit Tennessee to battle Marc Gasol (18.9 PPG, 8.7 RPG, 4.1 APG, 42 FG%) and the Memphis Grizzlies (9-23) on Saturday at 8:00 p.m. This game will mark the second of four meetings between the Grizzlies and the Clippers this season. They have met up a total of 97 times as the Grizzlies won 48 games while the Clippers pulled 49 wins. The last time they played each other was on November 4 when the Grizzlies handed the Clippers a 113-104 loss. In that game, Mike Conley scored 22 points, pulled down one rebound, dished off 3 assists, and committed one steal. Blake Griffin finished with 30 points, 11 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals, and one block.