Dwight Howard says Rockets need more energy in Game 2 vs. Clippers

Dwight Howard says Rockets need more energy in Game 2 vs. Clippers
Rockets center Dwight Howard is wrapped up by Clippers center DeAndre Jordan, who was called for an intentional foul, in the fourth quarter of Game 1 of their NBA Western Conference semifinal series. The Clippers won, 117-101. (Wally Skalij / Los Angeles Times)

A day later, the Houston Rockets were still talking about their lack of energy Monday night during a loss in Game 1 of the NBA Western Conference semifinals against the Clippers.

On Tuesday, Dwight Howard talked about the Rockets having the right mind-set for Game 2 on Wednesday night at Toyota Center.


"Our energy has to be better and it starts with mental energy," Howard said after Houston's practice Tuesday. "If you feed into all that negativity, all the things that went wrong, then it just tends to bring your energy level down. So we just have to stay positive."

The Rockets lost their home-court advantage and don't want to fall into an 0-2 hole against the Clippers in the best-of-seven series.

Houston lost even though Clippers point guard Chris Paul didn't play because of a strained left hamstring.

That had to be even more maddening to the Rockets.

"We can't hold our head [low] because we lost one game," Howard said. "It was upsetting. We didn't play the way we wanted to play. But we've got to move forward. We've got to move on."

The Rockets didn't take care of the basketball in the first game, committing 24 turnovers.

In their six playoffs games, the Rockets have turned the ball over 96 times.

Again, Howard said that can change if the Rockets bring the right energy.

"Your energy has to be better," Howard said. "When your energy is high, everything else falls in line. They played harder than us yesterday. That's where they won the game. It wasn't like they did anything special.

"We just have to come back with a better effort. That's the main thing for me, is our effort and our energy has to be higher. We can't allow our bad game to affect us this whole series."

Twitter: @BA_Turner