Rockets Tie Third Best Record Through 50 Games in Franchise History With Win Over Suns
The Rockets matched the franchise record for wins through 50 games at 33 by beating the Phoenix Suns 122-108 at Toyota Center on Wednesday night. The win allows them to keep pace in the ridiculously competitive Western Conference where, despite their accomplishments, they still remain in fifth place. All five of the top teams in the West are on pace to win 50 games this season. By comparison, only two Eastern Conference teams -- the Miami Heat and the Indiana Pacers -- are on pace to hit the 50-win mark.
Four-game win streak might just be a start for the Rockets.
The Suns had already beaten the Rockets twice this year and had been on a roll of late until a loss at home Tuesday to the Chicago Bulls. The win gives the Rockets a four-game winning streak, their second of that length this year, as they head into a stretch of games against mediocre to below average opponents and the All-Star break.
Their next four games are against the Bucks (9-40), the Timberwolves (24-25), the Wizards (24-24) and the Lakers (17-32), teams that combine for a .379 winning percentage. Additionally, those games are spread out over 10 days. Once they get through All-Star weekend, however, they will launch into a four-game West Coast road trip that will include games against the Warriors, the Suns, the Kings and the Clippers. Phoenix, Sacramento and the Clippers have two wins each against the Rockets, so they will need to make hay while they have a favorable schedule.
Still, there is no question the Rockets are playing better, particularly on defense. They held Phoenix to 49 percent shooting and just 8-30 from behind the three-point line. After giving up 63 first half points, they only allowed 45 in the second half including just 18 in the fourth quarter.
The Rockets starting five plus Jeremy Lin have been particularly good lately and that continued against the Suns. Dwight Howard had 34 points and 14 boards, James Harden had 23 and both Terrence Jones and Chandler Parsons had 19. Jones chipped in 9 points while Parsons added 7 boards and 6 assists.