Though two games, both on the road, the Houston Rockets have a good thing going.
“We say it all the time: We might not knock you out in the first, second or third quarter, but fourth quarter if we keep playing the way we need to play we’ve always got a chance,” Rockets star James Harden told reporters.
The Rockets opened the season with a thriller of a win at Golden State, overcoming a 13-point deficit entering the fourth quarter to win by one.
Then, the very next night, they spoiled the Sacramento Kings’ home opener.
“To validate yesterday we had to win today or we wouldn’t validate yesterday,” Rockets coach Mike D’Antoni said. “They had that in mind. At the same time, a back-to-back on the opening two nights, especially it’s so emotional, that takes more out of you.”
The Rockets have done it with a balanced scoring effort and mostly, without new star point guard Chris Paul, who had to miss all of the Kings game with a sore knee.
Harden scored 27 against the Kings and Eric Gordon, normally the first man off the bench, started and went for 25.
And let’s not forget center Clint Capela, who erupted for 22 points and 17 rebounds.
It’s only the beginning, but for a Rockets team with big dreams, this is the best beginning imaginable.