Houston Rockets forward Nene leaves Game 4 with left groin pull

The San Antonio Spurs are in a good position right now. "I don't care about how many shots I get".

The Houston Rockets are in a must-win situation against the San Antonio Spurs Sunday in Game 5 of their Western Conference semi-finals. Plenty of the postgame dialogue celebrated the Spurs' height advantage and how they parlayed it into a 103-92 victory over Houston in Game 3 of this Western Conference semifinal series. "If you'd seen the clips of our transition D you would have traded all the players and fired me at the end of the game. They cut the deficit down. but no matter, what we just stayed with it". "But the whole goal was to get stops".

"We just know we have to win one there that's for sure", Rockets guard Eric Gordon said after scoring 22 points off the bench in the Game 4 win. His status for Game 5 is not promising. Kawhi Leonard had 14 in the first half but just 2 in the second, and LaMarcus Aldridge also finished with 16.

After Game 1, not many saw the Spurs putting on the defensive performances they had the past two games. They can take solace from the fact that, despite back-to-back defeats, the Rockets have been able to prove the doubters wrong all season long.

A fast start set the tone for the Rockets' offensive revival. James finished with 35 points, nine rebounds and six assists, while Irving notched 27 points, nine assists, five rebounds and four steals.

"I can finally breathe", Harden said. He also swapped regular starter David Lee for Pau Gasol from the start, which gave the Spurs a little more versatility, even if the lengthy center scored just 2 points before hitting the bench.

Leonard has hounded Harden, his teammates have run the Rockets off the 3-point line, and Gasol and Aldridge have done a fine job protecting the rim when chaos unfolds. While it'd be an added benefit if Murray created some more offense in Game 4, he did what was needed in this one. "It's enough to drive you insane". If I have a shot be aggressive and shoot it.

This was another blow to the Rockets, who found out before the game that starting point guard Patrick Beverley's grandfather died. James has been banging the boards all season averaging 8 rebounds to go with his 29 points per game.

NOTES: The National Basketball Coaches Association on Sunday named Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni a co-recipient of the inaugural Michael H. Goldberg NBCA Coach of the Year Award. Despite Harden's heroics, the Rockets never looked likely to win this latest encounter, and will quickly need others to step up if they are to challenge Gregg Popovich's experienced side. Gordon was especially efficient, scoring 22 points on 8-of-13 shooting, highlighted by 3s on back-to-back possessions to begin the fourth quarter that essentially eliminated any hope the Spurs had of mounting a serious comeback.

Related news