Another fantastic first quarter a mere 24 hours later, yet the same result at the conclusion of the game. A loss. Through nearly a quarter of the season, the Pelicans remain stuck on 4 wins.
Tonight, turnovers and personal fouls were the biggest culprits. At one point, the Pelicans had 18 turnovers to the Rockets 4. (It finished 23-10.) Whether it was a bad pass, less than 100% awareness or a silly offensive foul, New Orleans was careless. Plain and simple, had they taken care of the ball as well as Houston, there wouldn't have been as great of a need to focus on the calls.
Sure, we all expect the invariable advantages the Rockets get, especially at the Toyota Center. However, some of it was just plain awful. Omer Asik takes a Dwight Howard elbow to the face but no foul is called. Meanwhile, a Tyreke Evans and James Harden scramble on the floor results in a technical on 'Reke because he may have scraped Harden's face while reaching for a loose ball on the floor.
Shake my head, NBA. Your claims about a good product should rightly fall on deaf ears when certain teams are continually favored. My beef lies with not the fact that games are decided by one or two plays, but rather, the balance which is affected. A team that is being whistled for more fouls will undoubtedly become less aggressive, and thus the dominoes start falling in a negative manner. By the end of the game, you're witnessing a shell of the team that had appeared in the first 12 minutes.
Anthony Davis led the way with 29 points, 13 rebounds, 2 steals and 2 blocks. Ryan Anderson had a double-double with 19 and 10. Tyreke Evans and Eric Gordon each had 10 apiece.
James Harden led the way for the Rockets with 24 points, 10 rebounds and 6 assists.
Stay tuned for the full recap a bit later. I need to stew and decide whether the Pelicans have any chance of turning this burning ship around.