And here we go. The series that almost wasn’t. The Houston Rockets and Los Angeles Lakers begin their series on Friday in what should be an entertaining series.
The Oklahoma City Thunder had the Rockets on the ropes in Game 7 of their series. The Rockets were able to shimmy out of it, win the series, and are now set to tip-off against the Lakers.
The Lakers injury report is a bit nerve-wracking, including LeBron James, Anthony Davis, and Rajon Rondo. Rondo comes in questionable, while the other two are probable. You can pretty much guarantee, both will play on Friday night on Game 1.
The Rockets should be 100% headed into this series. Russell Westbrook is back to full health, and the rest of their injury report is old news. Game 1 is scheduled to tip-off on Friday night at 9 pm ET. Strap in!
The Lakers Time Off
The Lakers should come into this series extremely well-rested. They haven’t played since August 29th. Much better than the 48 hours of rest that the Rockets have.
They’ve been led by Batman, LeBron James himself. James may not have the energy of young superstar Anthony Davis, but there isn’t a better floor general in all of the league.
That being said, the last time the Lakers saw the floor, Davis scored 43 points and had nine rebounds. In the same game, LeBron had 36 points, 10 rebounds, and 10 assists. When they play like that, they’re completely unbeatable.
Back in Rhythm
If either Russell Westbrook or James Harden had the consistency of James and Davis, they might be the best duo in the league. Westbrook and Harden’s chemistry is a bit different than that, though. The two MVP’s do more covering for each other at times than playing like co-stars.
When Harden gets cold from behind the arc, Westbrook starts getting into the paint and kicking it out to him. They use each other to stay in flow more than they do it individually, but hey, that’s what great teammates are for.
Now that Westbrook has had a few games back since his hamstring injury, the Rockets hope he goes into this series in a better rhythm. They will need him against the best team in the Western Conference.
Grab your popcorn for this series, and get ready for some fireworks. This series has a ton of superstars, talent, and will hopefully play out to expectations. In Game 1, the Lakers are favored by six points with a game total of 225.5.
I believe this series goes six or seven close games. Game 1 may primarily be a shootout. The Lakers likely take the victory in, but the Rockets can keep it close.
Look for the Rockets to cover the six points in a high-scoring affair. Take the Rockets and the over. Good luck.