The Houston Rockets maintained their perfect record with a 104-93 road victory against the Philadelphia 76ers Monday night.
James Harden stole the show, tallying nine rebounds, five assists and an impressive 35 points. This was an incredibly entertaining contest to watch. Both teams traded three point conversions throughout the first half.
Philadelphia’s Tony Wroten used his speed to force turnovers, fouls and keep the 76ers in the game while K.J. McDaniels went 3-4 from three point range and ended the game with 14 points.
Perfect Run Continues
But in the end, the 76ers couldn’t keep up with the Rockets. New addition this season,Trevor Azira had an incredible game, tallying six three pointers, six rebounds and seven assists for a total of 24 points.
The 76ers struggled to get the lead in the game. And every time they came close, Harden would head to the free throw line and extend the Rockets lead. James Harden’s frequent free throw conversions really hurt the 76ers in this game.
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Rockets center Dwight Howard had a strong game defensively, blocking four shots and not giving the 76ers any clean looks or easy points. Howard also had three steals and ended the game with 11 points to his name.
With this victory, the Rockets improve to 4-0 on the season. Even though the Rockets won the game, I was surprised at how many times they carelessly lost possession. Several of Howard’s passes were picked off easily or ended up going out of bounds. If the 76ers could’ve capitalized on some of these mistakes, the game would’ve been a lot closer.
The Rockets must find a way to clean up those arid passes, if they want this winning streak to continue. Also, they need to do a better job in tight in the offensive end. The Rockets had three beautiful passing plays that lacked the required finish at the rim. Houston’s next opponent is the Miami Heat on Tuesday night. If the Rockets hope to extend this winning streak, they must be far more aggressive when attacking the rim or finishing a passing play.
For the Philadelphia 76ers, this is another frustrating loss. However, rookie Nerlen’s Noel continues to improve each game.He had six steals and wasn’t intimidated by guys like Howard at all.
This team is in a terrible position with an incredibly long injury list. The 76ers will not be able to get out of this hole. This team needs to spend a few years rebuilding and reshape its roster. This is going to be a long season for this squad of players, but it will give the rookie forwards some much needed experience.