With Chris Paul poised to miss Game 2 with an injury again, F Blake Griffin will have to play well enough for the both of them.
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Los Angeles Clippers PG Chris Paul ruled out of Game 1 with hamstring injury
The Houston Rockets host the Los Angeles Clippers in Game 2 of the Western Conference Semifinals with the hope of tying the series after losing in Game 1.
The Clippers thoroughly dominated the Rockets in Game 1 despite missing All-Star G Chris Paul, getting a triple-double from Blake Griffin (26 points, 14 rebounds, 13 assists) and a double-double from C DeAndre Jordan (10 points, 13 assists) en route to a 117-101 victory. Bench player Jamal Crawford added a whopping 21 points along with three successful 3-point attempts and the team collectively was money from the free throw line, going 22-of-30 while the Rockets went just 14-of-24.
The Rockets played well enough to break the 100-point plane thanks to good performances by G James Harden and C Dwight Howard, but despite giving more than 20 minutes to bench players Josh Smith and Corey Brewer, the pair recorded just 15 points between the two of them. G Jason Terry also didn’t pull his own weight, scoring just 10 points in thirty minutes. The team connected on just 11 out of 33 three-point shots and was less than 60% successful from the free throw line.
In the First Round of the playoffs, all of the teams that started 2-0 went on to win the series. Should the Rockets give up Game 2 to the Clippers, their hopes of advancing to the Conference Finals could be in serious jeopardy. Look for Houston to put up the fight of their lives in this one.
Prediction: Houston Rockets win Game 2 – It’s hard to imagine Griffin going ballistic the way he went in Game 1. The Rockets, meanwhile, have shown a tendency to play great when their backs are to the wall as they know it will be if they fall into a 0-2 hole in the series. Expect a much better performance by Josh Smith and Corey Brewer as well.