What’s wrong with the Houston Rockets?

Houston%20rockets%20logo.gifDave Berri breaks it down. The bottom line is that no player on the Houston Rockets is playing as well as they did last year. Moreover, Tracy McGrady is no longer a dominant player — indeed, he is now just another above-average NBA player. Add in the fact that, as of mid-December, Yao Ming ranks as only the 9th most productive center in the NBA so far this season and you have all the ingredients necessary for an underachieving team.
My younger daughter and I took in the Rockets’ victory over the Toronto Rapters at Toyota Center on Saturday night, which pulled the Rockets back to a .500 record (15-15) on the season. The Rockets were playing the backend of back-to-back games, so they pulled out the win even though they played without McGrady (who is out for a few games with a sore knee) and were a bit sluggish overall.
However, my sense from watching the game is that Rockets Coach Rick Adelman has finally settled on his rotation. Yao will take most of the minutes at center with Luis Scola taking the balance, Chuck Hayes, Scola and promising newcomer Carl Landry will share the minutes at power forward, McGrady, Bonzi Wells and Shane Battier will share the minutes at small forward, and McGrady, Wells and Luther Head will share the minutes at the two guard. Rafer Alston and speedy rookie Aaron Brooks — both of whom looked good on Saturday night — will share the minutes at the point guard position. Once McGrady returns, my bet is that Battier is the one who has his minutes reduced from last season more than anyone else.
That’s not a bad rotation. If Adelman sticks with it and barring injury, I will be surprised if the Rockets do not improve their record substantially over the 52-game balance of the season.

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