On the Lookout: Can Warriors get back on track vs. Rockets?

Published May 1, 2021, 4:30 PMJon Carlos Rodriguez

The Warriors, who lost their last two games, will need to beat the Rockets to increase their chances of making the play-in tournament.

A lefty from the Houston Rockets not named James Harden just dropped 50 points and dished out 11 assists. This was something that happened just the other day, and was definitely a bright spot in what turned out to be a dark, sad season for the Rockets.

Against the Milwaukee Bucks, Kevin Porter Jr. was doing stepbacks, Euro steps, and layups off the wrong foot to get his career-high in points. He scored 32 of these in the second half alone, 17 in the fourth, which was important because Houston had to claw back from a 17-point first half deficit to get the win.

The 20-year-old Porter Jr. became the youngest player in NBA history to get a 50-point double-double with assists and the fourth youngest player to score 50 before his 21st birthday. The list includes LeBron James, Brandon Jennings, and Devin Booker.

The Rockets, a team with the league’s worst record, have long been out of playoff contention, but it’s moments like this that will make them feel alive. Porter Jr.’s career night helped end their five-game losing streak.

Speaking of losing streak, the Golden State Warriors are on the verge of falling into one after dropping a couple against the Dallas Mavericks and the Minnesota Timberwolves.

The Warriors were in a bit of a hot streak in mid-April, thanks to Steph Curry turning into a human fireball whose sole purpose is to burn nets. For the whole month, Curry drained a total of 96 3-pointers, which without even looking it up, sounds like some sort of record (looked it up: it is). 

However, Golden State is still only 10th in the West, and will ever be so careful in hanging onto that last play-in tournament slot. The closest team to snatch it from them are the New Orleans Pelicans, which interestingly, they will have to face three more times in the last remaining games.

A few years ago, a Warriors-Rockets matchup would’ve been a battle of elite teams. But times have changed. This is what the Warriors have in front of them in every game: the threat of missing the playoffs for the second straight year. That’ll keep them on their toes. The Rockets? They’re just game for another out-of-left-field performance from the likes of Kevin Porter Jr. and that’s enough reason to catch their games from here on out.

The Golden State Warriors and Houston Rockets will try to outshoot each other at 7:30 AM on NBA TV Philippines via Cignal TV or NBA.smart.

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