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Chris Paul.

Mike D'Antoni hopes Chris Paul can return in two weeks

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After pulling off one of the biggest moves of the offseason by acquiring Chris Paul from the Los Angeles Clippers, the Houston Rockets have been deprived of his services to start the season. 

The point guard suffered a knee injury in pre-season and hasn't featured since the opening night encounter with the Golden State Warriors. 

It was reported that he would spend at least a month on the sidelines but this was never officially confirmed by the Rockets. 

But head coach Mike D'Antoni has finally shed some light on the star's progress and when we can expect to see him back on the floor. 

According to Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle, D'Antoni is hopeful Paul could be back in two weeks time.

With the team looking to integrate CP3 and superstar James Harden in the same lineup, his injury hasn't given the All-Star duo the opportunity to work together on the floor and build chemistry. 

Despite the concerns shared by some, the Rockets are confident that they can form one of the best backcourt tandems in the league and will each benefit from playing without the ball. 

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In a recent documentary on ESPN, Paul explained how being able to share ball-handling and playmaking duties was a huge reason why he joined Houston as he was fed up of that responsibility with the Los Angeles Clippers.

In the absence of the veteran, the Texas-based outfit still has the second-best record in the Western Conference at 6-3.

As they showed in their impressive win over the Warriors in the season opener, they will be legitimate challengers to the defending champions this year but they will need Paul fit and healthy to stand a chance of dethroning them.

To the surprise of many, the Rockets' solid start hasn't been solely driven by their offence as they've tightened up on the other end of the floor too.

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They rank 11th in offensive rating and 12th in defensive rating over the first two weeks of the season, a solid balance that was often missing en route to 55 wins a year ago.

D'Antoni has always been viewed as just an offensive coach who paid no attention to defence but these early numbers indicate otherwise. 

With CP's imminent return, it will only boost the team’s chances of improving further, which will be bad news for the rest of the competition, as Houston will be an even more difficult team to beat.

Topics:
NBA
James Harden
Houston Rockets
Southwest Division
Western Conference
Chris Paul
L.A. Clippers
Pacific Division

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