Rockets vs Timberwolves

Rockets vs Timberwolves Live On Free :

Having restored order to this series with a devastating 50-point quarter, the Houston Rockets look to close out the Minnesota Timberwolves in Game 5 on Wednesday night.

It’s amazing what a 50-point quarter can do for a team. Despite being outscored by 11 in quarters 1, 2, and 4, one good stretch of 12 minutes was enough to shift the narrative from “The Rockets are in a rut” to “The Rockets can outscore anyone.”

Sure, the Rockets may have scored a ton of points and won comfortably, which was definitely helped along by those 50 points. However, it was the return of Houston’s defense that gave Houston a commanding 3-1 lead in their first round series. Once again, Houston asserted its dominance on that end of the court and held the Timberwolves to 100 points just two days after hemorrhaging 121 points to Minnesota. Make no mistake: scoring is nice, but this isn’t last year’s Rockets. They do NOT have to outscore teams to be successful anymore. They can play in the dirt and drag their opponents around too. (Yes, I know you have to outscore your opponents to win in basketball. You know what I mean.)

Last season, the slow pace and poor shooting would have doomed Houston. In fact, it did against San Antonio. Now, the Rockets know they can win ugly (Game 1) or they can win going away (Games 2 and 4). They also know that complacency is death. They haven’t won anything yet, and from postgame interviews it sounds like Houston understands that fact.

My prediction before the series was Rockets in 5. I picked Minny to win Game 3 behind their home crowd. That happened. Now it’s Houston’s turn to use their crowd to propel them to a huge win. From one TC (Target Center) to another (Toyota Center), the Rockets need to wrap up their series tonight rather than having to fly all the way back to Minnesota.

While Butler would never use his knee injury as an excuse, one has to wonder how close to 100 percent he is as he tries to keep the Timberwolves competitive. The All-Star guard has averaged 17.8 points and 6.3 rebounds while shooting 45.3 percent overall and made eight of 16 from 3-point range.

Towns needs to carry his offensive game from Minnesota back to Houston after totaling 40 points in Games 3 and 4 while recording double-doubles in both contests. He has averaged 13.3 points and 13.3 rebounds but shot only 41.3 percent, well off his season mark of 54.5 percent.

Including his 44-point effort in Game 2, Harden has three 40-point games and four 30-point games in his last 11 at home. He has averaged 31.0 points, 7.6 assists and 5.5 rebounds in that stretch along with 2.6 steals per game.

Clint Capela’s 20 offensive rebounds and 56 total rebounds were NBA-playoff highs through games entering Tuesday night. He has two three double-doubles in this series while playing Towns to a near-standstill with the same number of points and three more rebounds while outshooting him by converting at a 60.5 percent clip.

While Butler would never use his knee injury as an excuse, one has to wonder how close to 100 percent he is as he tries to keep the Timberwolves competitive. The All-Star guard has averaged 17.8 points and 6.3 rebounds while shooting 45.3 percent overall and made eight of 16 from 3-point range.

Towns needs to carry his offensive game from Minnesota back to Houston after totaling 40 points in Games 3 and 4 while recording double-doubles in both contests. He has averaged 13.3 points and 13.3 rebounds but shot only 41.3 percent, well off his season mark of 54.5 percent.

Including his 44-point effort in Game 2, Harden has three 40-point games and four 30-point games in his last 11 at home. He has averaged 31.0 points, 7.6 assists and 5.5 rebounds in that stretch along with 2.6 steals per game.

Clint Capela’s 20 offensive rebounds and 56 total rebounds were NBA-playoff highs through games entering Tuesday night. He has two three double-doubles in this series while playing Towns to a near-standstill with the same number of points and three more rebounds while outshooting him by converting at a 60.5 percent clip.

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