Russell Westbrook playing for Houston Rockets
Russell Westbrook

Houston Rockets will be facing Minnesota Timberwolves down the road on Saturday with both the teams coming off a game on Friday. Rockets, however will be the team more concerned about fatigue with them needing to travel over 1000 miles from Houston to Minnesota.

Rockets will be coming into the game with a 111-102 win against Indian Pacers, while the Timberwolves have a 137-116 defeat against the Wizards on their back.

Rockets will face 11 occasions over the course of the season where they will be playing back to back games. Friday and Saturday’s games is the second such case and they are already looking concerned with their injury list mounting.

Injury updates & Team news-

An already shorthanded Rockets might have to look deeper into their bench with Westbrook likely to sit out of Saturday’s game as per Rockets coach Mike D’Antoni before the Pacers game. Starting center Clint Capela is also listed out due to concussion. Forward Daniel House Jr. missed the game on Friday and is questionable for Saturday’s game with a bruised back.

“You’ll learn about the end of your bench maybe quicker than you wanted to,” D’Antoni had said, and that is what he might learn in the back to back games. Even the reserve guard Eric Gordon is out for six weeks after undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his knee on Wednesday.

James Harden
James Harden has scored more than 40 points in each of the last two games (Image source: Getty images)

Youngsters Tyson Chandler and Isaiah Hartenstein might get a few opportunities for the Rockets.

As for the Timberwolves, Andrew Wiggins is expected to be back after missing against Pacer due to personal reasons. The injury concerns for Timberwolves are not as grave as those for Rockets. Jordan Bell played 5 minutes against Pacers and Shabazz Napier did not feature at all. Both are expected to be available if needed on Saturday.

Predictions-

Even without Westbrook, Houston might fancy their chances with the kind of form James Harden is in. Timberwolves will not be making it as straightforward for them though, and they will want the likes of Karl-Anthony Thomas to come good.

The contest between Harden and KAT will be one to watch out for among others. Overall, it could be an interesting match-up with the Rockets looking overcome their injury and fatigue concerns and the Timberwolves looking to overcome their previous defeat.