Effort and energy can only come from within.
Houston had last played a game April 28, a close-out first-round game against the
There was no reason to think the Rockets wouldn't be ready for the Clippers on Monday night with five days to rest and prepare.
But when the Rockets gave up 37 points to the Clippers in the third quarter, it was a clear sign that Houston wasn't ready.
"We came out very lethargic,"
The Rockets will look at film and see how their poor judgment led to so many of their 24 turnovers.
They will see how
Harden is Houston's catalyst, and when he's not on the attack, the Rockets aren't the same team.
The Rockets played little defense in the second half, giving up 71 points, letting the Clippers shoot 56.4% from the field, 68.8% from three-point range.
But whether Paul plays or not, the Rockets know they have to put forth a better effort than they gave in the first game.
"Of course I can't put my finger on why we didn't play with the type of energy that we needed to play in the playoffs,"