Tuesday, February 25, 2020
The Houston Rockets are looking to capture a fourth consecutive victory tonight as they host the New York Knicks at the Toyota Center. They are coming fresh off of a 120-110 win over the Utah Jazz on Saturday. The Knicks, on the other hand, are trying to avoid a fourth straight loss. This will be the first of two times that these teams will meet up this season.
A LITTLE BIT OF HISTORY:
The Rockets and the Knicks have fought each other a grand total of 153 times as the Rockets won 79 games while the Knicks were kept to just 74 victories.
New York Knicks:
-Elfrid Payton (knee; 9.7 PPG, 4.7 RPG, 6.9 APG, 43.0 FG%, 23.7 3P%)
-Wayne Ellington (coach’s decision; 5.1 PPG, 1.6 RPG, 1.0 APG, 35.8 FG%, 34.6 3P%)
-Kenny Wooten (G-League)
-Ignas Brazdeikis (G-League; 1.9 PPG, 0.6 RPG, 0.4 APG, 27.3 FG%, 11.1 3P%)
-Frank Ntilikina (groin; 5.9 PPG, 2.2 RPG, 3.0 APG, 38.5 FG%, 31.0 3P%)
-Kadeem Allen (G-League; 5.0 PPG, 0.9 RPG, 2.1 APG, 43.2 FG%, 31.3 3P%)
-Tyson Chandler (coach’s decision; 1.3 PPG, 2.5 RPG, 0.2 APG, 77.8 FG%)
-Russell Westbrook (thumb; 27.2 PPG, 7.9 RPG, 7.2 APG, 46.6 FG%, 24.6 3P%)
-Isaiah Hartenstein (G-League; 4.7 PPG, 3.9 RPG, 0.8 APG, 65.7 FG%, 0.0 3P%)
-William Howard (G-League; 0.0 PPG, 1.0 RPG, 0.5 APG, 0.0 FG%, 0.0 3P%)
-Michael Frazier (G-League; 1.8 PPG, 0.4 RPG, 0.1 APG, 36.4 FG%, 25.0 3P%)
-Chris Clemons (G-League; 5.0 PPG, 0.8 RPG, 0.8 APG, 40.3 FG%, 35.5 3P%)
The Houston Rockets would have full control of the game in the first half as they shot sixty percent from the field, limiting the New York Knicks to just forty-six percent. James Harden got hot for 31 points which included four three-pointers. He also had 3 rebounds, 5 assists, and one steal while Robert Covington helped out with eight points. Eric Gordon and Danuel House combined for 10 points while P.J. Tucker was held scoreless. Ben McLemore played 14 minutes off the bench as he had 11 points.
On the other end of the floor, R.J. Barrett chalked up 16 points while knocking down 2 three-pointers. Former Lakers’ forward Julius Randle helped out with 12 points on fifty-percent shooting. Dennis Smith contributed with six points while both Taj Gibson and Maurice Harkless had two points each. Reggie Bullock played the most minutes off the bench but was kept scoreless as the Texas team went into halftime with a 72-57 lead.
The Knicks would try to make a comeback in the second half as they shot forty-two percent from the field while the home team shot thirty-nine percent. During that time, Smith added nine more points to his scoring total while recording 5 rebounds and 2 steals. Barrett, Randle, and Harkless earned five points each while Gibson had four. Mitchell Robinson played the most minutes off the bench but only had seven points.
As for the Rockets, Austin Rivers dropped 14 points off the bench while House, Gordon, and Harden combined for 22 of the Rockets’ 51 second-half points. McLemore played 14 minutes off the bench but only had six points as the Rockets came away with a 123-112 win. James Harden finished the game with 37 points, 6 rebounds, 9 assists, and 2 steals while R.J. Barrett had 21 points, 6 rebounds, 3 assists, and one steal.
The New York Knicks will head to North Carolina to battle Devonte Graham (17.6 PPG, 3.6 RPG, 7.7 APG, 37.3 FG%, 36.8 3P%) and the Charlotte Hornets (19-37) on Wednesday at 7:00 p.m. This will mark the third of four times that they play each other this season. January 28 was the last time they saw each other as the Knicks fell to the Hornets, 97-92. Terry Rozier finished that game with 30 points, 10 rebounds, and one assist while Julius Randle scored 24 points, pulled down 5 rebounds, dished off 2 assists, and committed one steal.
The Houston Rockets will host Ja Morant (17.6 PPG, 3.4 RPG, 6.9 APG, 49.2 FG%, 35.5 3P%) and the Memphis Grizzlies (28-28) on Wednesday at 8:00 p.m. This will be the third of four times that they meet each other this season. The last time they played each other was on January 14 when the Grizzlies won, 121-110. Morant finished that game with 26 points, 5 rebounds, 8 assists, one steal, and one block while James Harden settled for 41 points, 6 rebounds, 6 assists, and one block.