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West Conf. Finals - Game 1: Golden State Warriors 119 - 106 Houston Rockets - Rockets' Player Ratings

SENIOR ANALYST
Feature
948   //    15 May 2018, 11:54 IST

Golden State Warriors v Houston Rockets - Game One
Left to Right: PJ Tucker, Trevor Ariza
and
James Harden

The Houston Rockets gave up the homecourt advantage right in the first game of the series, something that they spent much of the regular season working for. If it were against literally any other opposition in the league today, they would be getting roasted for giving it up in Game 1, but since they're playing a historically great basketball team in the Golden State Warriors, it is understandable that they got outplayed.

Their display was, for the most part, full of promise, however. If they execute as they did for most of the first 2 quarters of the game, they might just push the Warriors to the limit in this series - though that is easier said than done given how the Dubs have not played even 6 games in a playoff series ever since acquiring Kevin Durant in 2016.

They went shot-for-shot with the Warriors during the first half, and the teams headed into the locker room at halftime tied at 56 each. The Warriors dominated both quarters in the second half, however, ensuring a tidy 13-point victory.

For the most part, the Rockets played exemplarily - they just got outshone by a better ball club than themselves. The following are the player ratings from the game:

Chris Paul - 7/10

Golden State Warriors v Houston Rockets - Game One
Paul comes off a pick from Ryan Anderson

Stat line: 23 points, 11 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 steal, 8-of-17 from the field, 2-of-7 on threes

Chris Paul had an average night overall. He scored 23 points on career average 47% shooting, but if he'd knocked down a couple of 3-pointers more the game might have been closer in the final stages. Hounded by the excellent Klay Thompson for a large part of the game, CP3 found the going tough, but he was money from mid-range for the most part.

Some of his points also came during garbage time at the end of the game, and he shot less than he did in the last 2 games of the Conference Semifinals. While the Point God won't exactly be looking back at this game as the regret of his lifetime, he could admittedly have gotten way more than the 3 assists that he tallied on the offensive end.

On the defensive end, Paul was locked in, and he even got into Kevin Durant's way for a short while during the second quarter, leaving it with untarnished laurels. He gathered 11 rebounds during the game as well, and he led a couple of fast breaks off these valuable boards.



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SENIOR ANALYST
Started as an Arsenal fan at the age of 6. Became a Ronaldo and a Real Madrid fan after the 2002 World Cup. Bandwagon Celtics fan this season, though I've watched the NBA with increasing frequency over the past 14 years or so. Played both games with my high school team at some of the highest levels there are in India. Played against East Bengal u-17s in college. A member of Mercurial FC, 1st division Amateur League team in Bangalore.
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