- The Western Conference Finals head back to Houston with the Warriors and Rockets tied at two game apiece
- Can the Rockets continue to play lockdown defense for the second game in a row?
- Will Andre Iguodala return in time to help the Warriors get back on track?
Houston, we have a series.
The Rockets evened their best-of-seven series with the Warriors at two games apiece on Tuesday night after downing Golden State 95-92 in Oakland. It was their most complete game yet, and it came just two days after suffering a historic 41-point defeat in Game 3.
The Rockets will try to build on that momentum on Thursday, May 24th when they host the Warriors at the Toyota Center.
Houston made headlines this season with its prodigious offense, but it won Game 4 with its gritty defense. The Rockets forced 16 turnovers and limited the Warriors to 12 points in the game’s final 12 minutes. PJ Tucker led the charge with 16 rebounds, and James Harden chipped in with three steals and two blocks to go along with his game-high 30 points.
Houston never gave up despite being down by as many as ten points in the third quarter, and showed the kind of heart and hustle that were sorely missing in their Game 3 blowout. We’re about to find out if they can maintain their balls-to-the-wall approach and advance to the NBA Finals for the first time since 1995.
Warriors vs Rockets Team Playoff Stats
|46.1||Points In The Paint||48.4|
|May 22 (Game 4 WCF)||GS||95-92||HOU|
|May 20 (Game 3 WCF)||GS||126-85||GS|
|May 16 (Game 2 WCF)||HOU||127-105||HOU|
|May 14 (Game 1 WCF)||HOU||119-106||GS|
Notable Injuries and Absences
|No injuries||Andre Iguodala (knee): QUESTIONABLE|
Game 4 Pick: Warriors (112-108)
You would think that a team with four All-Stars wouldn’t need any extra help, but the Warriors showed just how much they missed Andre Iguodala on Tuesday night. The 2015 Finals MVP is the glue that binds together all of Golden State’s best line-ups thanks to his unselfishness, athleticism and preternatural feel for the game. He understands ebb and flow better than nearly any other active player and has a gift for putting all of his teammates in a position to succeed. In the words of Steve Kerr, “He’s an organizer. He’s a guy who settles us down. He continuously makes the right play.”
Iguodala has the length and speed to guard four different positions and can seamlessly cover for Steph Curry’s many miscues and gambles.
He’s also one hell of a defender. Iguodala has the length and speed to guard four different positions and can seamlessly cover for Steph Curry’s many miscues and gambles. If he’s available on Thursday night, as is expected, than the Warriors will have all the piecse they need to defeat the Rockets and reclaim control of this series.
Yes, Igoudala is that important, and the fate of Game 5 rests on his shoulders.
|Golden State is 34-15 SU on the road||Houston is 40-9 SU at home|
|Golden State is 2-6 SU as an underdog||Houston is 72-15 SU as a favorite|
|Golden State is 22-5 SU after a loss||Houston is 59-15 SU after a win|
|Golden State is 40-55-1 ATS this season (42.1%)||Houston is 49-46-1 ATS this season (51.6%)|
|Golden State is 21-26 ATS on the road||Houston is 21-27-1 ATS at home|