In other words things look pretty grim, especially with the next two games coming up in Utah.
What's really killing the Rockets is that they miss so many easy shots right at the rim, and their inability to make free throws (something I forgot to mention in my last post). They lost by 6. They missed 10 free throws, most at crucial times including 4 in the 4th quarter. That's more than the final margin of victory. This lead off paragraph from the Chronicle basically sums it up:
The tough part was done. The Rockets got the shots. They got the stops. They had the game, and new life in another first-round playoff series only just began, back in their hands.
The easy part, however, was beyond their grasp. They missed the shots from the line and at the rim. They did not get the rebound after the stop with the game on the line.And T-Mac; one point in the 4th quarter? One? That's money time for all of the superstars I've ever seen in the NBA. McGrady is a very notable exception so far in his career.
But take heart Rocket fans, Utah did lose the first two games last year before rallying to win the series in seven, so all is not lost.
But it will be, much sooner than we all want, if the Rockets keep doing all of the little things that helps to lose games instead of win them.