The Houston Rockets will take over Indiana Pacers in what will be the last match for both teams before setting a foot in playoffs. It will not be a fight for any seed as such but will be interesting to watch what ability the two teams hold before the ultimate face-offs. Both are coming out of an embarrassing loss in their previous games, how will they get themselves together?
Rockets have taken fourth place in the Western Conference standings after the Denver Nuggets. Despite their distorted and changing lineup, Rockets have managed to have a good time in the bubble. They have won 4 out of 6 games with some remarkable performances.
Their key player, Russell Westbrook has been on and off with the games due to his bruised quadriceps. Since he played his last game against Heat, he will be rested for this one. Moreover, James Harden and Eric Gordon will make a comeback in this match after rest and minor injury respectively.
Being an offensive tank as a team, they have developed on their defensive abilities as well in Orlando. Harden particularly has made some changes in that area that is quite evident.
Other than the bigs, some other players have also drawn motivation to give terrific performances in some games. Austin Rivers recently starred against the Sacramento Kings with a career-high 41 points that led the Rockets to a large margin win.
As far as Pacers are concerned, they have come out of a high-intensity game defeat to Miami Heat in their last fixture. T.J. Warren, their rising star and potential bubble MVP is key to the team in all scenarios. But he will not be there for the Pacers tonight. It’s a big blow for them. The mn who could possibly drive them even close to victory was Warren.
In the absence of Domantas Sabonis and Malcolm Brogdon Pacers’ lineup has become distorted.
Victor Oladipo is also looking to regain form against Rockets after a long injury-driven patch. Other than him, starters, Myles Turner, Aaron Holiday, and Justin Holiday will also be there for their contributions.
After the T.J. Warren-Jimmy Butler face-off in the last match, Pacers are on the fifth seed. They can toggle with the fourth-placed Heat but it will not impact their playoff chances in any way.
The question is how will Pacers survive without half their key roster? Even though the result can be predicted in Houston’s favor, viewers will look for some fight from the other end.
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