Houston can't seem to figure out Clippers, faces elimination in Game 5

Rockets will have to find some fortitude and toughness to avoid elimination by Clippers in Game 5

Fortitude. Do the Houston Rockets have any left?

Toughness. Do James Harden and Dwight Howard, Houston’s top players, have it in them to carry the Rockets in these adverse conditions?

Pride. That may be all the Rockets have left since all else has failed them in the second-round playoff series they trail, 3-1, to the Clippers.

“We’ve come too far to quit,” Howard said after Game 4, when it looked as if the Rockets at least gave in when the Clippers applied pressure. “And we’ve come too far to let a little adversity stop us.”

The problem for Houston is that it doesn’t seem to have any answers for the Clippers.

The Rockets have been embarrassed in all three defeats, losing by an average of 24.6 points per game.

They got down by 37 points in Game 4 and 32 in Game 3.

That’s not showing much fight.

“We’ve come a long way,” Howard said. “I’m not going to quit, and I’m pretty sure these guys are not just going to just give up on this series.

“We’ve got to win the next one. If we don’t, we go on vacation. We’ve got to get our minds right and protect our home.”

The Rockets tried hacking DeAndre Jordan in Game 4, but it didn’t work.

Maybe the Rockets should try playing some defense.

Maybe they should try getting Harden more open looks.

He took just 12 shots in Game 4.

It has become simple for the Rockets: Win Tuesday night at the Toyota Center or go home.

“This is the ultimate adversity right here,” Harden said. “We’ve got to get one at home. Game 5, we’re back at the house and it’s really win or go home. Our backs are against the wall and we got to show up.”

Follow Broderick Turner on Twitter: @BA_Turner

Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times
59°