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Power Rankings Roundup: Week 20
Every week we go around the web to see where the Rockets rank!
NBA.com - 1st - More tough games are coming, but with their win in Denver on Sunday, the Rockets' 12-game winning streak includes five road wins over teams with winning records. Fourth quarters used to be a problem for James Harden (he shot 26 percent in the fourth through November), but he hasn't been running out of gas much of late. He has shot 48 percent (including 17-for-33 from 3-point range) in the fourth quarter over the winning streak, hitting a dagger, step-back jumper on Sunday, just the fourth game during the streak that has been within five points in the last five minutes. Trevor Ariza is back, but Eric Gordon's absence has allowed Mike D'Antoni to give 51 minutes in two post-break games to Joe Johnson without getting too funky with his lineups. Ryan Anderson (still coming off the bench) has played just six of his 40 post-break minutes at center.
ESPN.com - 1st - The Rockets enter the week having won 12 straight games, the longest active win streak in the NBA. They've had two of the four 12-plus-game win streaks in the league this season -- having also won 14 consecutive games from Nov. 16 to Dec. 18. On Sunday, James Harden posted his ninth 40-point game this season, which is the most in the NBA. In fact, he has three more such games than any other player (Anthony Davis has six).
SI.com - 1st - James Harden is the MVP if the season ended today.
CBSSports.com - 1st - The Rockets have won 12 straight, but there's always room for improvement. They picked up Joe Johnson after he was bought out from the Kings. Johnson was in the midst of a miserable season. Let's see if the post-All-Star break stretch can give him a return to form.
USAToday.com - 1st - Your weekly Big Three update: The Rockets are now 30-1 in games in which James Harden, Chris Paul and Clint Capela have played.
SportingNews.com - 1st - Second-half mission: Continue to play top-10 defense. The Rockets are No. 9 in defensive efficiency this season, and have done an especially good job defending the 3-point arc... It’s the reason they’ve been able to slip past Golden State at the top of the West, and it’s also their best hope of holding onto the No. 1 seed.