The Rockets Round 1 chances range from little to none. At least, that’s what the NBA pundits say.
But anybody who attempts to make the argument for Houston in a matchup with the heavily-favored Thunder, which starts Sunday in OKC, will quickly point to the Rockets rare and explosive offense.
They take a ton of threes in the halfcourt and a ton of transition shots at the rim (trying to push it like Mike D’Antoni’s old Suns teams). Long-range two-point jumpers, widely considered the most inefficient shot in basketball, don’t normally factor into their gameplan.
And that unique style has created some skewed numbers, which accurately speak to the kind of strange team OKC is preparing to face. Take a look at some of Houston’s offensive figures:
106.0 - Points per game. That’s the second highest in the NBA, slightly behind the Nuggets (106.1) and slightly ahead of the Thunder (105.7).
57 - Games this season they’ve scored 100 or more points, including 32 games of more than 110 points.
140 - Points in a regulation win against the Warriors in February, tops in the league this season.
23 - Made three-pointers (on a ridiculous 40 attempts) in that game. Chucking is their specialty and, when it’s falling, they’re tough to beat.
28.9 – Three-point attempts per game, four more than anyone else in the West averages. Live and die by the jumper…
100 - Possessions per game, tops in the league.
102.5 - Points given up per game, third most in the league (below only Sacramento and Charlotte). When you have little defense and lots of possessions, points are plentiful both ways
15.8 - Turnovers per game, most in the league. It can get sloppy when playing at such a frantic pace. And against the Thunder (a team that thrives off transition buckets) that can be particularly dangerous.