NBA Preview from The Sports Network|
Monday, February 10th
(All times Eastern)
Houston Rockets (34-17) at Minnesota Timberwolves (24-27), 8 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - Dwight Howard and the Houston Rockets will continue
their stretch of road games Monday against Kevin Love and the Minnesota
Timberwolves at the Target Center.
Monday's game features two of the more talented big men in the NBA with Howard
and Love. Howard is posting an average of 21.3 points and 11.3 rebounds in his
last 13 games, and has 10 double-doubles over that stretch.
Love, meanwhile, has missed two of the last three games because of injury and
hopes to get back on the floor Monday. Love is averaging 25.8 points and 14.1
rebounds in the past 12 games and is second in the NBA in rebounds (13.3). He
is listed as questionable versus Houston.
The Rockets began a stretch of seven of eight games on the road with
Saturday's 101-95 win at Milwaukee, as Howard led the charge with 27 points
and 13 rebounds. James Harden added 22 points, Jeremy Lin 18 and Patrick
Beverly scored 15 for the Rockets, who shot 48.8 percent for the game.
"Just glad we got that win. That was not our best game. We had a lot of
possessions offensively where we didn't move the ball and defensively they
kind of got what they wanted for a while," said Rockets coach Kevin McHale.
Houston has won five in a row, eight of 10 and 13 of its last 17 games, and
improved to 13-10 away from Space City.
The Rockets will return home to face Washington on Wednesday before starting a
five-game trek at the Lakers, Warriors, Suns, Kings and Clippers.
Minnesota opened a four-game homestand on a sour note, dropping a 117-110
decision Saturday to the Portland Trail Blazers.
Love missed the game because of a bruised quadriceps, while Corey Brewer
picked up the scoring slack with 26 points. Ricky Rubio scored 25 points and
handed out nine assists for the Timberwolves, losers in three straight and
five of the last six games.
Chase Budinger chipped in 19 points and Dante Cunningham tallied 14 to go
along with 10 rebounds for Minnesota, which fell to 14-10 at home and shot
just 41.2 percent for the game. The T'Wolves were also without Nikola Pekovic
(ankle) and Kevin Martin (thumb) due to injuries.
"It doesn't matter who's out, the next guy steps up," Minnesota head coach
Rick Adelman said. "That's the way you have to approach it. You can't worry
about who's not playing."
Martin is out indefinitely and is averaging 19.0 ppg this season. Pekovic is
expected to miss some time and has posted 18.0 points and 9.1 rebounds.
The Wolves will also host Denver and Indiana on the homestand and lost the
first of four meetings with the Rockets on Nov. 23 in a 112-101 loss at the
Toyota Center. Harden did not play in that game because of a sore foot.
Minnesota and Houston are slated to meet again on March 20 and April 11, while
the Rockets have won 18 of the last 23 matchups between the teams. Houston has
won nine of its last 11 trips to the Target Center.
02/10 10:29:35 ET