1. Welcome! Please take a few seconds to create your free account to post threads, make some friends, remove a few ads while surfing and much more. ClutchFans has been bringing fans together to talk Houston Sports since 1996. Join us!

[ClutchFans] Rockets-Blazers: Behind the Numbers

Discussion in 'Houston Rockets: Game Action & Roster Moves' started by The Cat, Apr 14, 2014.

  1. The Cat

    The Cat Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2000
    Messages:
    20,524
    Likes Received:
    4,136
    2 people like this.
  2. heypartner

    heypartner Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 1999
    Messages:
    56,216
    Likes Received:
    39,185
    Thx for posting this!

    You mention Mathews being the match-up Portland might try to exploit the most. Isn't he 3-4th option? It's nice to hear that the opponen'ts 4th best player going against our best offensive player is their best matchup.

    I think the key will be bench play, too. You didn't mention that in the article. Care to add that here in this thread.
     
  3. AvgJoe

    AvgJoe Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2009
    Messages:
    3,618
    Likes Received:
    375
    They will exploit Harden's defense, though I think Harden will give more effort for playoff games.
     
  4. The Cat

    The Cat Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2000
    Messages:
    20,524
    Likes Received:
    4,136
    Yeah, I didn't go into bench play much because Portland's theoretical edge hadn't really translated much in the earlier matchups. That said, one thing that worried me a bit in the March 9 game was how easily Mo Williams attacked on penetration. He jacked up way too many shots (5-of-15), of course, but the 11 assists were a lot. I do like that Lin got some confidence himself in that game, though (26 points). If those two cancel each other out, I like our chances.

    I really think it comes down to whether the Rockets can make the offense work while playing Asik/Howard together for 15-ish minutes (most notably, down the stretch in the fourth quarter). I'm encouraged by what happened in November, and obviously McHale wanted it prior to the last game. If it works, then yeah -- Portland's most favorable matchup probably becomes Matthews vs. Harden, and that's not good news for them. I'd guess series ends in 5 games, if that happens. On the other hand, if we have to go small for offense and Aldridge torches Jones/Harden/Parsons/Motiejunas/insert player here, I think it goes 7. I'd still like the Rockets' chances, but that to me is the difference between a short and long series.
     
  5. Jimes

    Jimes Member

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2006
    Messages:
    867
    Likes Received:
    25
    Nice write-up. I agree with you that we'll see Twin Towers to start and the Bev, Lin, Harden, CP, DH lineup a lot, especially to close out games. And, let's hope Harden will elevate his focus on D come playoff time like TMac used to.

    Other random thoughts: I have nightmares of TJones trying to guard LA; I hope Lin can hold Mo Williams; I think we'll only see the 4 guard lineup if CP is having a bad game.

    I have a pretty good feeling overall.
     
  6. WaitForIt

    WaitForIt Member

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2012
    Messages:
    525
    Likes Received:
    16
    Matthews playing well heading into the playoffs, too.

    Also, who's ready for the inevitable footage of Yao's Rockets beating Portland to get past the first round? So happy, yet so sad...
     
  7. maxiep

    maxiep Rookie

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2009
    Messages:
    84
    Likes Received:
    13
    We matchup terribly with you. However, I disagree with a couple of the assertions in the article.

    First, I think our biggest mismatch will be Aldridge. If he can assert himself, be it against hometown boy TJ (Jefferson HS) by using his length or pulling out Asik and exploiting his speed, then we stand a chance. If not, we're toast.

    Second, the critical part of the matchups for us will be how Lillard deals with Beverley. PB seemed to show no ill effects in the Pels game from his meniscus, but that's an injury that swells up later. How he felt the next day is more important. If his lateral movement is limited, then that will help Lillard. However, if Lillard lets Beverley get into his head, as he has done in the previous four matchups, then we're dead.

    Third, Wes has been okay, but he can't hold a candle to Harden. Harden is going to get his 28-30. Wes might get 20, but that won't be enough.

    Fourth, Parsons has owned Batum. Either Nico steps up his game and forces Parsons to play harder on defense, or it's going to be a short series.

    Fifth, it will be foul trouble that affects this series. If we can't keep Lopez and Matthews in the game, then we're in real trouble. Similarly, if Beverley or Asik get themselves in foul trouble, then Lillard and Aldridge are going to go off.

    My heart tells me the Blazers win. However, my head tells me differently. You guys are a terrible matchup with us. For us to win, we have to have everything go right. You have some slack in the line.
     
    3 people like this.
  8. txtony

    txtony Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2008
    Messages:
    9,813
    Likes Received:
    3,017
    I think the key for the Blazer is not Lillard or Aldridge. It's Matthews and Batum. When those two play wells, they are hard to beat. When they play poorly, they usually lose. Unfortunately Harden has to guard one of them. Might make sense to switch Parson on whoever is hot.
     
  9. mr_gootan

    mr_gootan Member

    Joined:
    May 23, 2001
    Messages:
    1,552
    Likes Received:
    66
    Asik is key to keep rebound edge. It's a short series if we win the boards each night.
     
  10. FTW Rockets FTW

    FTW Rockets FTW Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2011
    Messages:
    27,724
    Likes Received:
    21,374
    Great write up. However what about McHale vs Stotts? WHo has the edge?

    As far as coaching goes, a large part of playoffs come down to making the right substitution and right rotations at the right time and calling timeouts when needed. Also the ability to draw up a play to get a basket when needed.
     
    1 person likes this.
  11. Beardaholic13

    Beardaholic13 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2014
    Messages:
    1,348
    Likes Received:
    872
    I think this is what will determine weather we have a tough time in this series or not. Portland excel in rebounding, i think they are actually number 1 in the league. If we win the rebounding matchup, which i think we are quite capable of doing we win this series in 5.
    Ive said for months now i think we matchup perfectly vs portland, hopefully it shows on the court.
     
  12. FEAR THE BEARD

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2014
    Messages:
    135
    Likes Received:
    16
    How far we go in the playoffs will have a lot to d with Harden's defense. Will he step up? lets hope so. We already know the Rockets can score enough to go far, it's just defense. Another big part of going far is bench play. It helps that JLin and Asik are back to the bench, so they can spark something.
     
  13. okierock

    okierock Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2001
    Messages:
    3,120
    Likes Received:
    186
    DMo has played much improved defense. I think he can spell Asik on LMA to help keep Howard fresh and out of foul trouble.

    A healthy Beverly will be the deciding factor though.
     
  14. Deuce

    Deuce Context & Nuance
    Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2001
    Messages:
    24,216
    Likes Received:
    27,411
    Ben, great writeup! Beverley on Lillard and Asik on Aldridge. Key defensive matchups for sure.
     
  15. oakdogg

    oakdogg Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 1999
    Messages:
    3,110
    Likes Received:
    251
    I think the Blazers are too soft. I don't see them getting us in foul trouble, because they don't draw many fouls. On the other hand, the Rockets will attack all day long.
     
  16. Haymitch

    Haymitch Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2005
    Messages:
    22,210
    Likes Received:
    8,899
    Defensive rebounding will be important for us, since we suck at it and Portland is a good offensive rebounding team.
     
  17. TheRealAllpro

    TheRealAllpro Morey only fan
    Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2012
    Messages:
    5,247
    Likes Received:
    3,932
    This team will go as far as Dwight will take them
     
    1 person likes this.
  18. Pull_Up_3

    Pull_Up_3 Member

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2010
    Messages:
    6,089
    Likes Received:
    306
    Fixed
     
  19. basketballholic

    basketballholic Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2013
    Messages:
    17,516
    Likes Received:
    4,150
    OP was dead on in this piece. I appreciate the practice insight. It's good to know the Rox brass understands how effective Asik is defending LaMarcus and that they are keeping that weapon loaded.

    If we don't use Asik on LaMarcus, Portland could pull an upset. If we deploy Asik on LaMarcus Portland could still win but it would take a miracle. The Portland fan on here that thinks LaMarcus can beat Asik with speed hasn't watched enough video. Only way LaMarcus can beat Asik is by altering his release on his jumper which usually spells doom for his accuracy.
     
  20. anchel

    anchel Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2010
    Messages:
    3,521
    Likes Received:
    621
    The analysys doesn't count rebounding, 5on5 game, transition game, tactical resources...

    I see the Blazers switching Batum/Matthews with Harden, and if we're going to play minutes with Asik + Howard in the paint... Harden is NOT going to score 30.

    If we need Asik to stop Lamarcus, we are going to have to rebound and score on transition, because it's gonna be difficult in stagnant offense. This is a team we can score on transition, if we rebound.

    Harden actually trying to defend is crucial for the Rockets.

    I think these will be a more defensive series than previously expected. We're going to see very tough games. And help from bench by Lin, Motiejunas, Hamilton, it will be VERY welcomed offensively. The Lin vs Williams is an important matchup.
     
Loading...

Share This Page

  • About ClutchFans

    Since 1996, ClutchFans has been loud and proud covering the Houston Rockets, helping set an industry standard for team fan sites. The forums have been a home for Houston sports fans as well as basketball fanatics around the globe.

  • Support ClutchFans!

    If you find that ClutchFans is a valuable resource for you, please consider becoming a Supporting Member. Supporting Members can upload photos and attachments directly to their posts, customize their user title and more. Gold Supporters see zero ads!


    Upgrade Now