Houston Rockets vs San Antonio Spurs: Lineups, preview & prediction 4/1/18
The Houston Rockets have achieved all they needed. Now they have a chance to help knock out the San Antonio Spurs from the playoffs as they meet Sunday.
It was not the most esthetic of victories, but the Rockets (62-14) wrapped up home-court advantage throughout the playoffs with a 104-103 victory over the Phoenix Suns on Friday night for their 11th straight victory.
Gerald Green, getting his first start of the season because Eric Gordon was ill, hit a 3-pointer as time expired as Houston also ran their home winning streak to 18. The Rockets also played without starting guard Chris Paul, who continues to deal with a hip injury that also has ruled him out of this contest.
James Harden finished two rebounds shy of a triple-double with 28 points and ten assists while P. J. Tucker hit a career-high five 3-pointers and finished with 17 points. Joe Johnson, who has seen more minutes recently, chipped in 16 off the bench.
San Antonio (44-32) enter this game fourth in the Western Conference but just three games ahead of ninth-place co-holders Los Angeles and Denver with six games remaining. The Spurs extended their home winning streak to eight games with a 103-99 victory over Oklahoma City on Friday night.
LaMarcus Aldridge moved back to his usual power forward position and had 25 points and 11 rebounds while Patty Mills worked his way to 14 points despite shooting three of 12 from the floor. The Spurs went 13 of 31 from beyond the arc to offset a 42-26 disadvantage in points in the paint.
The Rockets have averaged 111.7 points and won the three games between the teams this season by a combined 42 points. Houston last swept San Antonio in a four-game season series in 2013/14.