The Houston Rockets entered Monday hoping that unexpected time off (thanks to two postponements related to a winter storm) will allow them to hit the reset button after a long losing streak.
Against Zach LaVine and the rising Bulls, it didn’t happen that way. Fueled by a 46-point eruption in the third quarter, Chicago (14-16) won for the fourth time in five games with Monday’s 120-100 blowout (box score) at the Toyota Center. It is the Rockets’ eighth consecutive loss (11-18), all since Christian Wood’s new right ankle injury.
The last time Houston had a losing streak longer than eight games I was a player of 15 early in the 2000-01 season.
LaVine led Chicago’s balanced effort with 21 points, and was 4-of-6 from 3-point range (66.7%). Meanwhile, his teammate in the backcourt, Coby White, scored 24 points and grabbed 10 rebounds. David Nwaba led Houston with 22 points, which tied a career-high and 9 rebounds.
The Rockets were understaffed again, with two starters absent in Wood and Victor Oladipo (right foot strain). However, the regulars who played weren’t good enough. Veteran shooting guard John Wall (15 points, 7 assists) shot just 4 of 14 overall (28.6%), while Eric Gordon (13 points) in the backcourt shot 5 of 18 (27.8%) and 1 out of 10 in 3-pointers (10.0%).
Houston returns to action on Wednesday in Cleveland, kicking off at 6:30 p.m. Central Time. For now, here is a collection of highlights and post-game reactions from Monday’s poor performance.