Houston Rockets drop game 2 to Utah Jazz; series tied 1-1

Even if Crowder is able to contain Harden, the Rockets have too many other weapons that the Jazz must defend.

Game three in Salt Lake City is scheduled for Friday (Saturday NZT).

"(Houston) not only made it a game but basically took control of the game, I think we could feel that", he said of the Rockets' surge to the lead in the third.

As long as Game 1's issues are corrected, the Rockets should be halfway to the West final by Wednesday's end. At one point in the second quarter they led by 19 points thanks to plays like this.

Utah Jazz rookie guard Donovan Mitchell celebrated an eventual assist to Joe Ingles before the wing actually connected on the long-range shot.

In the second quarter, Rudy Gobert keyed a 9-0 run that made it 56-37 with 6:49 to play in the half. The scary thing for Jazz fans looking for hope: Houston still managed to win that game 102-82 thanks to 27 points from Chris Paul and 21 from Gerald Green. Paul also received a technical for barking at Ingles. The Rockets prove to be a tough team to guard and provide many challenges for opposing defences.

Twitter, who have already gotten squarely around the absolute lad this playoff series, was again awash with theories about how Ingles looks less like a professional basketball player, and more like a guy rewinding tapes at a Blockbuster in 1999.

Adjusting to life without Rubio - Ricky Rubio's hamstring strain could easily keep him out for the entire series, and the Jazz will need to find a way to operate their offense without him. The age old saying "don't bring a knife to a gun fight" totally applies here.

But the Jazz will be looking a lot better tonight and expect the Rockets to be challenged profusely.

Get the ball out of Harden's hands. And they entered their second-round series against the Houston Rockets as huge underdogs, and now have the series tied through two games. Rubio's career has been revitalized in Quin Snyder's system and this was certainly the player I expected to see when he was drafted but I'm scratching my head as why we're barely seeing this now.

That pretty much sums up what happened if you missed round one of the National Basketball Association playoffs. All the while Clint Capela had an under the radar double-double and Eric Gordon made his first appearance in the form of a solid close out, finishing with 18 points. Rockets games have typically gone under the O/U total (55.7 percent).

Prediction: Start the vehicle! "Defensively is where we have to hang our hat at, and we didn't play as well on defense as we normally do".

  • Julie Sanders