The 2017-18 Houston Rockets are incredibly good at basketball. We all know this. Heck, not even three weeks ago I wrote a game preview basically proclaiming them the title favorites. I could write the same article again, updated with the injury bug that has mercilessly bitten every Warrior with a modicum of basketball talent.
San Antonio Spurs (44-32) vs. Houston Rockets (62-14)
April 1, 2018 | 2:30 pm CDT
Watch: ABC; Listen: 1200 AM WOAI
Spurs injuries: Kawhi Leonard (return from injury management)
Rockets injuries: None
But you know what? None of us wants to read another article praising the Rockets, and I certainly don’t want to write one. So instead of my usual analysis for game previews, let’s talk about this:
No, this isn’t some April Fool’s prank on my part. The official NBA History website has current-28-year-old James Harden putting up 51 points on April 1, 3015. This is an incredible feat for several reasons. Among them are:
(1) Harden scored 51 points on the 1000th year anniversary of his 51-point game against, coincidentally, the Sacramento Kings. Both teams even finished with the same score! Maybe James will win the MVP this time around.
(2) Sacramento exists 997 years in the future, surviving several pressing problems including anthropogenic climate change, “the big one” and the Isaiah Thomas trade.
(3) The NBA’s computation power is insane. I knew the NBA’s analytics department was years ahead of most other professional sports leagues, but one millennia ahead? Adam Silver is a madman, I tell you.
That third point is important. The NBA could use its prescience to answer some of life’s deepest questions. Are we alone in the universe? Do we live in a simulation? Will the Seattle Mariners ever make the postseason?
The question Spur fans should be most concerned about: when will Kawhi be back? The answer may not even matter. Would his return even change anything at this point? Is San Antonio doomed to an early postseason exit no matter what? Will they even make the pla—LET’S MOVE ON.
Matchup to watch:
Dejounte Murray vs. Chris Paul. Murray often follows up tepid performances with a series of monster games. This feat may be especially difficult tonight against Chris Paul. Without Kawhi, the Spurs need to find ways to slow the Harden-Paul offensive. If Dejounte can disrupt CP3’s flow, that two-headed beast might not be so scary.
And of course the Rockets decide that Chris Paul won’t play after I write my preview. Dejounte’s going off for 50 for some karmic payback.
Vegas line: Rockets by a bônch.
Game prediction: Rockets by 8.
For the Rocket fans’ perspective, visit The Dream Shake.
As always Tony must dominate Fisher.
PtR’s Gamethread will be up this evening for those who want to chat through the game. You can also follow along with the action through PtR’s Twitter feed.