Tuesday, October 28, 2008

It's Christmas!

Finally, opening day! Not for the Rockets, but the season has begun - at least for six teams. The Rockets open tomorrow night at home against the Memphis Grizzlies. With Shane Battier and Aaron Brooks both out with bad wheels, let's hope the Rockets have enough in the tank to pull out their first victory of the season. I'm betting they do.

A friend once compared the preseason to going to school. I think it's more like Christmas Eve. Any father who loves his kid enjoys putting the bike together the night before almost as much as seeing the child's eyes when they first behold the finished product. The regular season is Christmas morning. Well, Merry Christmas everyone! I'm looking forward to unwrapping the first win of the season tomorrow night!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

You decide

Rafer Alston is out of criminal court and back on the basketball court. Congratulations to him for beating the rap. Did high-profile attorney Rusty Hardin put a legitimate case before the jury or was it a smoke-and-mirrors game often employed by those who can afford the best lawyers? View the arrest video and you decide.

This is a blog. It states opinion - my opinion - so here it is. If I had been on the jury and had to make a decision based on the video herein, I could not have found Alston guilty. Obviously, I couldn't smell his breath or look deeply into his eyes, but I can at least understand why the jury decided as it did. That doesn't change the fact that he had no business driving at 3:00 AM after having "a few drinks," but that is between him and his employer, both of whom have much to lose from an image problem.

So it's back to basketball and let the games begin!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Missing pieces

Well, the hospital ship does not yet seem to have left port. 40% of the starting lineup is still not ready to play. Tracy McGrady's offseason knee surgery has not allowed him to effectively compete. He played a few minutes in Boston before being ejected, but hasn't played since. Is it just me, or does anyone else wonder if he got himself thrown out of that game on purpose? OK, that probably wasn't fair. At least he was showing some spunk.

Shane Battier's foot has kept him off the floor for all of training camp. He is scheduled to have an MRI tomorrow, but he says he will play in the final preseason game Thursday. Both players will take some time to get up to speed and it may cost the Rockets in the short run. The most important physical factor in playing defense is the wheels.

A couple of other Rockets have missed some time this week too because of a head cold going around. Better now than in the regular season, I say.

The good news is that the Rockets are a deep veteran team. They need another training camp like they need a hole in the head. When the bell sounds, they will show up. Frankly, I'm ready for the bell.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Only 9 days, 6 hours, 34 minutes and 20 seconds till opening night!

Friday, October 10, 2008

So Far, So Good

After two wins in the preseason, the Rockets are looking pretty good, especially considering that two of their top starters have yet to take the court.

Ron Artest has filled in nicely for Shane Battier, who is recovering from offseason surgery for a few more weeks. I'm certain there will be much debate in the coming months as to who is the better player and who deserves to start. That's the kind of controversy that's great to have. BTW, Artest has kept his nose clean and said all the right things about enjoying being in Houston. Good for you, Ron. Luther Head has been his usual serviceable self in Tracy McGrady's place.

Yao's foot seems to be healed. He's using the preseason to get in game shape. Good. That's what it's for. Brent Barry seems to have taken to the offense just fine, getting 8 assists in the second game. Rafer seems focused on his on-the-court life rather than his in-court issues, Joey Dorsey is showing flashes of talent, Chuck Hayes, Mike Harris, Luis Scola and Aaron Brooks all seem to be in mid-season form, at least conditioning-wise.

Like I said, so far, so good. I'm starting to get excited.