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  1. #1
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    A few early season observations

    So, it's certainly been a roller coaster start of the season, but there are worse places to be than 4-2 after six games, and there's still plenty of room for improvement. Here are a few observations I've made after the first six games.

    1. The Howard/Asik duo only works sparingly. Casspi should start and they should only have that duo on the court for 5-10 minutes a game or against specific teams with slower, dominating front courts like Memphis.

    2. The ball movement has been horrific, and they are not passing the ball well. This is probably the most frustrating thing out of all that I've witnessed so far. The Rockets last year were fifth in assists per game (23.2), and now they're sitting at 27th (17.5). That's inexcusable. There needs to be less Iso ball with Harden and post ups by Dwight and more fluidity to this offense if it's going to be successful. They're also 28th in the league in AST/TO ratio, which is horrifying.

    3. I don't like the way they've used Dwight so far. What happened to the legendary pick and rolls we were supposed to get between Harden and Dwight and Lin and Dwight? I haven't seen nearly enough of those, but that should have been this team's bread and butter offensively. That being said, I think Dwight catching it in the low post has still been the Rockets most successful form of offense. He's also killed it on the glass and defensively, so it's hard to criticize the guy in spite of the free throw issues.

    4. The 3-point shooting has not been there, which might be the biggest surprise at all. The team is freaking 20th in 3-point shooting percentage. Harden is shooting 27.9%, Beverley is shooting 27.3% and Parsons is an unbelievable 19%!!!! If it wasn't for Lin, Garcia and Casspi (all over 40%), this would be the worst 3-point shooting team in the league. This stat will improve as Harden and Parsons find their touch, but it needs to improve soon. I think improved ball movement and starting Casspi should work wonders for this problem.

    5. The Rockets suck at turnovers and free throws, but those are two things we all had to know were going to happen. Asik's actually shooting 70% and Dwight's shooting right at 50%, which is about what you'd expect. But the kind of play that happened on Thursday at the end of the game CANNOT happen. They have to be more aware in those situations and only get Dwight the ball when they absolutely have to late in games.

    6. Lin has been exceptionally good. Aside from Howard, he has been the most consistent offensive player on the team at times. That being said, I still like it better when he's coming off the bench. I feel like when he and Harden are on the floor together, it's almost like a competition for the ball. There's not enough ball movement and the offense usually breaks down into a perimeter shot or a late drive by Harden or Lin that doesn't always work. However, I'm kind of beginning to wonder if Lin shouldn't be the primary ball handler. Through six games, he's averaging nearly as many assists as Harden in far fewer minutes with only two-thirds the amount of turnovers. I'd like to see him run the offense more and Harden play more without the ball like he did in OKC.

    7. The Rockets suck at lob passes. They need SOMEONE to come in and teach them that ****. Harden is especially bad at it, and with a player like Dwight Howard, that's something they're going to have to work on.

    8. When they've been bad, they've been horrible, but when they've been good, they've been spectacular. It's easy to look at this first stretch of games and say, "They should be 5-1, and they got killed by the Clippers." But we need to remember this is a means to an end. This team was always going to have struggles figuring out their identity early on, and we're witnessing that first-hand now. But the positives ultimately outweigh the negatives, and once this team fixes some of these problems I've addressed, they're going to be one of the best teams in the NBA. Everyone just take a deep breath, relax and try to see the light at the end of the tunnel.


  2. #2
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    It's hard to argue with everything you just said.

    The biggest problem is, by far, Howard and Asik playing together. That originates every other problem we've been having, as much as it hurt to say it. You can see when they're out there together, we can't find shooters open and we can't get the ball to move, because it's so easy to guard them. I don't remeber seeing Howard being dubled once when Asik was on the floor, why would you, when you got the guy guarding Asik right next to you. It's becoming more and more likely we will end up trading Asik at the deadline.

    Considering it's so early in the season, I hate that 8-men rotation. The Asik and Howard duo hasn't worked so far, when Casspi or Garcia are on the floor, we're great on offense, but we can still be crushed by a big like Blake Griffin. Why are we not playing Jones or Motiejunas? Are they so bad. I thought Jones finished last season soooo well, he should get some minutes, especially now, when we're still experimenting stuff.
    Rockets | Texans | Astros

  3. #3
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    I also want to throw in that Harden seems to hate Jeremy Lin and that our late game offense sucks because it's just a Harden iso that ends in a contested jumpshot

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greg. View Post
    I also want to throw in that Harden seems to hate Jeremy Lin
    Did jam hack your account?

    Anyway we all knew next year onwards will be our run at the tittle. This year is assessment and a learning experience. 2nd to WCF is what I maintain as a good season. Then in the off-season we need to go out and get a perimeter defender or 2 because that's out biggest problem. That and our starts

  5. #5
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    What is everyone elses opinion of Kevin McHale as the head coach? I simply don't think he has what it takes to be a
    championship caliber coach. Unfortunately, because Howard likes him so much, I think we are stuck with him while D12
    is here.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Asik's better View Post
    Did jam hack your account?

    Anyway we all knew next year onwards will be our run at the tittle. This year is assessment and a learning experience. 2nd to WCF is what I maintain as a good season. Then in the off-season we need to go out and get a perimeter defender or 2 because that's out biggest problem. That and our starts
    Haha no but it seems like Harden shrugs off any call Lin tries to make and there was 2-3 straight plays where Harden had Lin wide open for a three and took a contested fadeaway instead. Obviously Harden is the better player but, him and Lin don't seem to get along

  7. #7
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    Anyone know Harden's stats on iso's?

  8. #8
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    Had some troubles with an average team. Hope they get healthy and their act together pretty soon. Hasn't helped that they've had only one day off between games (along with some back to backs) since the season started. Now they have a day off, back to back in Philadelphia and New York, day off, Nuggets back at home then two days off (followed by another back to back). All three should be winnable games.


    And Terrence Jones looked pretty good. Will he be the guy to take over that 4spot? What happened to Casspi? And I thought Garcia looked off the last few games. Missed why he's hurt, though.

  9. #9
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    Flu-like symptoms for Garcia
    The Most Epic Thread EVER
    Quote Originally Posted by dbroncos78087 View Post
    Yea what is he thinking not wanting to drive next to or near drunk people. I have never met a more sheltered scaredy cat. As a hobby i find 10-15 homeless guys and give them lots of alcohol and play bumper cars all day but im normal.

  10. #10
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    Half the team was apparently suffering from flu-like symptoms yesterday and/or some form of injury. But as bad as they were in the second half, I was really impressed with how they stepped up in both overtimes. Lost among the huge numbers put up by Lin, Harden, Howard and Parsons, it's worth mentioning how well Terrence Jones played last night. In addition to seven points, he was a force on defense, sticking to Rudy Gay in key situations and tallying 10 rebounds and 5 blocks. I really think this guy could be the answer at PF if they just give him a shot. Anything has to be better than the Howard/Asik lineup.

    Also worth mentioning is how bad Beverley has been as of late. He was 0-5 with 3 turnovers last night, and he's now averaging only 8 points a night on 34.1% shooting and 26.1% shooting from the 3-point line. Yikes! The entire Rockets team can't hit a 3-pointer right now, though. They shot 26.9% from beyond the arc last night, and thank god for Jeremy Lin or else that number would be far worse. That trend HAS to turn around for this team to be a legitimate contender, and I'm sure it will improve as the season progresses.


  11. #11
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    Its time for the Rockets to trade Parsons Asik and Lin.

    Lin/Parson: Neither improved from last year. Their improvement comes with Howard being on the floor along with Harden. Lets be real no team is planning for Lin or Parson right now,when playoffs begin Lin and Parsons flaws will easily show. Neither of these guys can create a shot for themselves or make a play consistently and I wouldn't trust either to make a play when it counts.

    Asik: He's taking up space. Daryl Morey has to remember this is a business . I'm sure he was aware Howard was becoming a free agent when he acquired Asik and that by getting Asik he could use him as another piece to move, in order to make the team better. Parons , Lin, and Asik are as good as they're are going to get as far as I'm concern . Lets use those 3 to get a stretch 4 . Kevin Love , Chris bosh, Lamarcus A. , Milsap , Horford , Larry Sanders . Tj jones isn't a bad fit.

    Harden/Beverly : Both are having a hard time adjusting , Harden is pressing , He need to take his time go with the flow, stop holding the ball and make a play . That comes with chemistry he has to get a feel for where everyone will be ; He's the 1st option and our best play-maker. As for Beverly, I think he should be the 3rd option on offense rather than the 4th behind Parsons. He's the point guard he sets the tone. Parsons is more of a spot up shooter than a play- maker. It'll help the rockets and Parsons if they're going to stick with this Lineup .
    Last edited by farren.louis; 11-12-2013 at 12:36 PM.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greg. View Post
    I also want to throw in that Harden seems to hate Jeremy Lin and that our late game offense sucks because it's just a Harden iso that ends in a contested jumpshot
    I know I'm really late with this comment, but last night (great win!) I really saw it. Harden seems to be very concerned about his place on the team as top dog. He wants to be the man so bad he doesn't seem to want to share the spotlight with anyone else. There were a couple times when their body language just screamed, "I don't like you and I'm not passing you the ball."

    Maybe as a Lin-antic, I was just imagining it??

  13. #13
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    3 - Dwight's free throws. An announcer said that Dwight makes 80% of his free throws in practice, and he shoots better on the road (so far this year), so it must all be in his head. What do people think of this? I wish he would be confident enough to try other ways of shooting free throws (underhand, farther from the line, bank shots?).

    7 - Actually, I think Lin has a problem with passing to Howard. Lin seems to like the pocket/bounce pass in the lane, when Howard would prefer a ball lobbed up or at least up around his head. I think that since Lin tends to have only a half-step on his help's defender, he has a hard time lobbing it up over the big man.

    In general, Lin seems to get a lot of foul/assists (uncounted assists where his man gets fouled before he can score). I think these are because Lin bounce passes so much, defenses can get back in time to foul. He needs to get his passes to the big men faster.

    (opinions of a terrible pg. So, hey, I freely admit I may have no idea what I'm saying! help me out guys, maybe my weekend pick up game will be helped.)

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by farren.louis View Post
    Its time for the Rockets to trade Parsons Asik and Lin.

    Lin/Parson: Neither improved from last year. Their improvement comes with Howard being on the floor along with Harden. Lets be real no team is planning for Lin or Parson right now,when playoffs begin Lin and Parsons flaws will easily show. Neither of these guys can create a shot for themselves or make a play consistently and I wouldn't trust either to make a play when it counts.
    Have you WATCHED any Rockets games this year? Lin has been leaps and bounds better than last season and has been probably the most consistent offensive player on the entire team so far. Parsons hasn't been as good as last year, but he's deal with back injuries, and it's far too small a sample size and far too small a drop in production to criticize him for. Also, by suggesting the Rockets trade Parsons, you clearly aren't considering (A) How incredible Parson's contract is, and (B) The fact that Parsons and Dwight are friends, have the same agent and are likely linked at the hip at this point.

    The fact that you would overreact and suggest trading these guys makes me question your knowledge of this team and of basketball, in general.

    Asik: He's taking up space. Daryl Morey has to remember this is a business . I'm sure he was aware Howard was becoming a free agent when he acquired Asik and that by getting Asik he could use him as another piece to move, in order to make the team better. Parons , Lin, and Asik are as good as they're are going to get as far as I'm concern . Lets use those 3 to get a stretch 4 . Kevin Love , Chris bosh, Lamarcus A. , Milsap , Horford , Larry Sanders . Tj jones isn't a bad fit.
    They're clearly willing to make a deal for Asik, but I'm guessing that teams aren't exactly knocking down the door for him right now and Morey isn't going to trade him for pennies on the dollar. They need to deal Asik, but the only guys on the list that you suggested who would be worth trading all three of these guys for are Love, Bosh, Aldridge and Horford. Minnesota isn't dealing Love when he's playing like this, Miami won't break up their big three unless they fail in the postseason and neither Atlanta or Portland are likely to deal Horford or Aldridge unless they're out of the playoff race for sure.

    Larry Sander makes no sense, whatsoever, because he's a legit 5 and has the same issues Asik would have in this lineup, and Millsap isn't worth dealing all three of those guys.

    Harden/Beverly : Both are having a hard time adjusting , Harden is pressing , He need to take his time go with the flow, stop holding the ball and make a play . That comes with chemistry he has to get a feel for where everyone will be ; He's the 1st option and our best play-maker. As for Beverly, I think he should be the 3rd option on offense rather than the 4th behind Parsons. He's the point guard he sets the tone. Parsons is more of a spot up shooter than a play- maker. It'll help the rockets and Parsons if they're going to stick with this Lineup .
    Your judgment of these players is WAY off. Beverley is NOT a great playmaking point guard. He's a good defender and 3-point shooter who hustles and fits a lineup well next to a playmaking wing like Harden. He's basically Derek Fisher or Mario Chalmers, and is not a suitable No. 3 option in an offense. Lin and Parsons are both superior offensive players who are far more capable of creating for themselves than Beverley. Beverley's issue this season has been that he's trying too hard to create shots rather than play in the flow of the offense. Also, he's missing pretty much any open jump shot he's getting.

    You're clearly overrating Beverley while giving no credit to Lin or Parsons.


  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by JetRocketAngel View Post
    I know I'm really late with this comment, but last night (great win!) I really saw it. Harden seems to be very concerned about his place on the team as top dog. He wants to be the man so bad he doesn't seem to want to share the spotlight with anyone else. There were a couple times when their body language just screamed, "I don't like you and I'm not passing you the ball."

    Maybe as a Lin-antic, I was just imagining it??
    There have been a few times where I've seen that, but I'm not ready to say that these guys hate each other. If anything, I think maybe they're just competitive with one another. They actually worked fairly well together late in the game last night. I don't really mind if they like each other or not as long as they're playing well and winning basketball games. As long as they respect each other, they'll be fine.


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