We can’t be comfortable and say we have the best record in the league. We still should prove ourselves. – Houston Rockets All-Star James Harden
Yet: “I think we have a serious chance,” D’Antoni said.
The Rockets won two out of the three meetings with the Warriors this season; they’re only the fourth team to beat the Warriors twice in a season since Steve Kerr became coach. They own the second-best offense, no surprise, and rated 10th defensively, a surprise.
And the Warriors? They’ve adopted the “catch us if you can” attitude and placing a premium on staying healthy, first and foremost. Perhaps fortified by two championships in three years and the knowledge that any warts now can be erased once the postseason begins, they rightly see themselves as the hunted, rather than the hunter, in the West.
Nothing’s changed with the Warriors, who still have four All-Stars, a pair of MVP candidates in Curry and Durant, and noted playoff beast Andre Iguodala is slowly awakening from his regular season hibernation.
Curry compared the current Rockets’ confidence to Golden State’s mentality before the titles began rolling in. That’s why he chuckled at all the fuss made over the bravado comments from Capela and Harden and asked, “what else are (they) supposed to say?”…
The Warriors don’t discuss the Rockets as much as the Rockets are willing to discuss them. That’s understandable. Yet the time could be fast approaching when the Warriors must concede the obvious and there’s nobody else except Houston standing between them and a fourth trip to The Finals.