Latest posts by Colton Jones (see all)
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The Houston Rockets and the Cleveland Cavaliers were like two ships passing in the night… going in opposite directions.
Houston’s 120-88 demolition of Cleveland on Saturday night at Quicken Loans Arena only served to feed the narrative of the routes the teams’ respective season.
The Rockets are rolling. Led by the dynamic backcourt tandem of James Harden and Chris Paul, they are 38-13 and have moved to within two games of defending champion Golden State (41-11) for the best record in the NBA.
The way Harden and Paul have meshed their games to form one of the top duos in the league resembles what the Cavaliers had with LeBron James and Kyrie Irving.
“Unselfish, but selfish at the same time,” Harden said after the game Saturday night, explaining how he has clicked so well with Paul. “We know when to be selfish. We know when to get aggressive and get in attack mode and looking to score. We’re just playmakers naturally. Never anything forced… it’s all just organic and natural.”
The results when CP3 and The Beard both play in games have produced a 23-3 record. In the 25 games either has missed because of injury, the Rockets are 15-10.
Houston coach Mike D’Antoni admits it took a large leap of faith by the Houston organization, pairing the two superstars in the same backcourt.
“You hope, but hope gets you fired sometimes,” D’Antoni said. “You’ve got to give them the credit. They try to make it work, they wanted to make it work, and they’re making it work.
“I don’t know the Cleveland situation. Everybody has to go through it, but [Paul and Harden] got together this summer and said, ‘We’re going to make this work.’ And they’ve made it work. That’s our situation. I don’t know anybody else’s situation. They’re terrific. Chris has been nothing but a great leader, and he’s a Hall of Fame player. We’ve got two of them.”