As the Houston Rockets work on wrapping up the first round of the Playoffs, the truth is that the second round of the Playoffs are the matches that everyone has been waiting on. As it stands now, the Milwaukee Bucks will face the Boston Celtics, most likely the Philadelphia 76ers will face the Toronto Raptors, and at the top of the bill in the West, the Rockets will probably face the Golden State Warriors to play out what was easily the most thrilling series of last year’s playoffs.
The Warriors are hungry for a 3-peat and would love to close out the chapter of their last year in their current stadium with the team assembled as it is as victors. The Rockets are hungry for a chip and have two players, in James Harden and Chris Paul, that are carrying the weight of wanting to add that piece of the puzzle to their legacy.
A sweep of the Jazz series would have been ideal for the Rockets squad. Who doesn’t enjoy rest and healing? Luckily for the Rockets, their upcoming opponent (Warriors) has found themselves in a similar predicament in that a game 5 was forced. Monday night’s away game proved to be too much for the Rockets who seemed to be playing in slow motion. Clint Capela, a key player for the Rockets, struggled Monday night. It turns out he has been battling a couple of respiratory illnesses. Capela was diagnosed in Salt Lake City with adenovirus and a klebsiella infection.
“It’s tough, man,” Capela said after the game. “Especially when I try to breathe, it’s hard. I’m just going to fight it the best that I can.” He was held to only four points and was 1 of 6 shooting.
Coach Mike D’Antoni, who is currently on the mend from a virus he has been battling, confirmed postgame that Capela was “battling a virus.”
Hopefully the Rockets can find a way to close this series out sooner rather than later so they can fully mend before the main event. The Second Round of the Playoffs.