The Rockets played their first game together as a brand-new team yesterday against the thunder who recently revamped their team as well over the offseason. We got to see CP3 and James harden work together yesterday and man was it beautiful.
CP3 decided to play a little passive early on and racked up 11 points and 7 assists. CP3 also did not attempt a mid-range shot at all. SHOCKING I KNOW. But one of the best mid-range shooters in the league managed to not take a mid-range shot with one of the teams who shoots it the least shouldn’t be too surprising. D’Antoni has mentioned how he wants to get CP3 able to shoot wherever he want’s and will allow him to take this dreaded mid-range shots. He noted that when a pro like CP3 has a game that he has made well over his career, you don’t change it. It seems CP3 decided to change it, but maybe it’ll all be back by the regular season. Harden looked a little off during the middle of the game. He took a ton of 3’s and missed some, but also had some great shots and passes throughout the game. Hopefully, his shooting will be better when the time comes, but he looked a lot better playing off the ball and being able to create for himself off a catch and shoot, rather than needed to dribble and pull up. The spacing I saw on James Harden was incredible. I don’t think I’ve ever seen him this wide open in my life before. Harden managed to finish with 16 points and 10 assists. Even with CP3 he still managed to have the team high in assists. That whole “ball hog” narrative is going away for sure. EG had a great debut as well as he shot lights out from three making 6-8 behind the arc. With EG not having to play PG anymore, I can see his role as a primary shooter increasing. Everyone else had a decent game as well, Ariza shot well from behind 3, Moute had some great shooting and defensive shots. P.J. had some good defense on Melo to stop his scoring streak. The end part of the bench looked okay, as they gave up a good chunk of the lead, but didn’t blow it. I am impressed by how this team played defensively and offensively. This is going to be a fun year.