McHale after loss: 'Our offense dried up'
While the result was the same, the second matchup between the Houston Rockets and the Los Angeles Clippers had a much different tone to it. The Rockets lost on Saturday night 107-94 but the Rockets point guards did a much better job on this night, than they had done on Monday night in the team’s 19-point loss.
The Rockets still got off to their all-too-familiar slow start, trailing 18-8 before the game was seven minutes old. However, they fought back to take the lead just in just three and half minutes. It was Jeremy Lin off the bench running the show during that juncture. The Rockets had six buckets to move in front and Lin assisted on three of them.
Lin finished with seven assists to lead the Rockets and six points. The Rockets scoring punch from their point guards came mainly from Pat Beverley. He scored a career high 19 points.
He started the game making just one of his first five shots, then finished by hitting five of his final eight, including three 3-pointers.
“Patrick played very well, he was pestering him, He had four steals,” head coach Kevin McHale said. “He did a nice job on Paul, as nice as you can, Paul’s a hell of a player. In the end, they were able to break away some, but I thought he did a really nice job.”
Beverley's four steals were also a career best and he added two blocked shots, which also tied a career high.
Beverley stressed the need to keep playing hard as something this team needs to strive for.
“We just need to learn how to keep fighting,” Beverley said. “That's the biggest thing with us. Not offense, not defense. Just to be able to fight and grind games out. Luckily, it is happening early than later so we'll be straight.”
Dwight Howard, who had 21 points and eight rebounds, said they expect to deal with some adversity throughout the season and doesn’t expect these last two losses to get this team down.
“We want to do something great here,” Howard said. “Winning a championship isn’t easy. You are going to go through some adversity and have some really, really down times during the season. There’s going to be a point in the season that we go on a big run. We have to take the little things that we don’t do well right now, nip those things in the bud, and we’ll be fine.”