The Houston Rockets needed this win.
With eight losses in their past nine games, their formerly comfortable playoff berth has suddenly looked very much in question with their slide down the Western Conference standings.
Houston entered the night just 8-14 on the road, a daunting statistic given that the New Orleans Hornets had been playing their best basketball of the season. Prior to Friday night's meeting, the Hornets had won seven of their past 10.
The Rockets figured to need their best effort to steal a badly needed win away from home. Luckily for them, the Hornets never bothered to show up in this game.
The Rockets (23-22) sprung out of the gate, threatening to break the game open after a 27-18 advantage in the first quarter. They looked on the brink of a blowout several different times but could never find the consistent runs to put the Hornets (14-29) out of the game.
Although those runs never came, a 100-82 road win did.
Style points don't factor into postseason races, and certainly not when a team limps into a game like the Rockets had.