Houston Rockets Season Preview

Alex TimmonsCorrespondent INovember 1, 2008

          With the Houston Rockets two games into the 2008-09 season they are looking to finally pass the first round with Tracy McGrady. So far off to a good start with a 2-0 record with wins against Memphis and at Dallas. And with the addition of Ron Artest the Houston Rockets look to finally win their third career NBA title.


PGRafer AlstonLuther Head   
SGTracy McGradyBrent Barry   
SFRon ArtestShane Battier   
PFLuis ScolaCarl Landry   
CYao MingJoey Dorsey

Strengths- Offensive Firepower- The Rockets are probably the 2nd best offensive team in the NBA behind the LA Lakers especially with Rick Adelman at head coach who is an offensive genius. They also have such an advantage in their front court with Artest, Scola, and Yao that they will probably be among the NBA leaders in  rebounding                                                                                               

Defense- Last year, the Houston Rockets were 4th in the league in opponents points per game (92.0) and 2nd in field goal percentage(43.3%} behind the Celtics. Now with the addition of Ron Artest and a year under Luis Scola's belt look for the Rockets to lead the league in opposing points per game and field goal percentage.

Bench-The Rockets had a great bench last year and with the addition of Brent Barry look for the Rockets to be able to rest Tracy McGrady in some games to keep him healthy for the playoffs and still stay good in the season. The bench includes Aaron Brooks, Steve Francis, Carl Landry, Chuck Hayes, and Brent Barry.

Weaknesses- Health- The only weakness I see in the Rockets is health. With McGrady and Yao missing a total of 43 games last year and that was a good year for them. Also Artest has had some issues with attitude and health also.

          As shown in the first 2 games of the season you can see Artest will be the X factor for the Rockets. His ability to both forward positions, shoot threes, guard the opposing teams best player regardless of position brings the Rockets to the top tier of the Western Conference with the Lakers, Hornets, and Jazz.

Next Five Games
 Sat, Nov 1Oklahoma City8:30 pm 
 Tue, Nov 4Boston8:30 pm 
 Thu, Nov 6at Portland10:30 pm 
 Fri, Nov 7at LA Clippers10:30 pm 
 Sun, Nov 9at LA Lakers9:30 pm

Prediction- Houston Rockets- 1st in Southwest Division, 2nd in Western Conference, 52-20 record, Lose to LA Lakers in the Western Conference Finals 4-3.