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  • Tim MacMahon has been all over the Rockets for the last couple years here at ESPN.

  • First things first.

  • What do you make of how that all ended and then having this short shelf life to get to the Lakers in the next round?

  • So much has happened to him to this team here just in the last several hours.

  • Yeah, I mean, the short shelf life, Mike D'Antoni jokes.

  • It's a good thing they've got such a young team, so obviously less than ideal.

  • Least they don't have to fly across the country.

  • But that is, uh, that that is definitely a tough turnaround.

  • But as far as the way this ended, I mean e.

  • I don't think it's a It's an exaggeration to say that not only was the Rockets season on the line, but a lot of ways James Harden's reputation was on the line.

  • If they lose that game, especially Chris Paul knocks out James Harden's Rockets in the first round on the on the night you know, in the game seven were hardened.

  • Stinks it up offensively.

  • I mean, what do you guys talking about right now?

  • James Harden Choke and James Harden not showing up this that and the other and and rightfully so.

  • But for him, toe to make the biggest place so far of the Rockets season on the defensive end.

  • I think there is a lot of satisfaction that comes along with that, in part because obviously he wants to win games.

  • Who wants to advance and the playoffs, but also because he really takes it personally that he has this reputation as a guy who just doesn't care defensively.

  • And if you've watched the Rockets, uh, really the last few years, Is he an all world defender?

  • No, but he is a guy who is dedicated himself for an effort on that end of four.

  • There are things he does very well defensively.

  • Good hands, you know, one of the best post defenders in the league.

  • But that's an absolute hustle play for a guy whose reputation is he's not willing to do the little things.

  • It takes tow, win games.

  • So that was, you know, a lot of ways.

  • A redemptive moment forward Tim.

  • You're exactly right.

  • I feel like the narrative has changed with James Harden that sustained effort he gives you now defensively, that's all you can ask for, right?

  • You can ask me a lock down defender.

  • But ultimately, do you think that we look?

  • It's about surviving and advancing in these playoffs.

  • Who cares how you got here You got here.

  • We haven't seen a team this year where Russell Westbrook and James Harden have been hot at the same time.

  • Do you think we will see that versus the Lakers?

  • You know, you need to know.

  • Are there going home?

  • There's no question about that.

  • And, you know, it's interesting, because Hardened started off this season just ridiculously high.

  • And then I think I think the you know, the toll that it took was apparent on him.

  • I think his legs got heavy.

  • He was beat up.

  • Um, And then, you know, Russell Westbrook took off when they went to small ball when they opened up the floor.

  • But to your point, they've never both been going in the same time.

  • They were hoping coming to the bubble that would happen.

  • And obviously, you know, Russ gets coronavirus.

  • He's late.

  • Then he's hurt, you know?

  • And he's still, you know, he went over his minutes from a little bit last night, but this is a Russell Westbrook right now is a guy who he's trying to get a rhythm trying to chip off for us, trying to get his wind back.

  • I, you know, in the playoffs, Siri's and so I You know, I guess the short answer is, I think that's an awful lot to ask to expect Russell Westbrook to be a peak level.

  • But if he's not, I don't see how that could be.

  • The Lakers.

  • Well, look at it, Tim.

  • Let's preview that Laker rockets, uh, serious coming up on Friday.

  • Obviously, I'm a Laker fan, and I like what we have.

  • How can the Rockets get a piece of the Lakers and potentially upset this?

  • Well, you know, like I said, they've gotta have their two stars playing at at a ridiculously high level.

  • And then you believe it or not, the Rockets.

  • You know, we talked about James Harden's defense to play, but you know, statistically, the Rockets have the best defense so far in the playoffs, and so it's gonna be fascinating to see if that can continue and look.

  • One of the huge risk of playing a historically small lineup is, you know, and they knew when this happened there probably have to see Anthony Davis in the playoffs.

  • Well, here he is.

  • So you know, how does how does P J.

  • Tucker James Harden was.

  • Probably.

  • Guys will be on him most often.

  • Robert Covington.

  • You know, How did they How did they deal with Anthony Davis?

  • And can Anthony Davis just take over the Siri's?

  • And then I'm fascinated to see what Frank Vogel does when you know if you remember the day the Robert Covington, his first game of the Rockets was in L.

  • A.

  • You know against the Lakers.

  • Rockets win that game on the road and Vogel matched up with the Rockets.

  • He went small down the stretch.

  • I'm curious to see if he's willing to kind of take the risk of his big men.

  • JaVale McGee, Dwight Howard.

  • You know, having a guard three point shooters just to be able to bully and beat up the Rockets on the glass iron in the paint.

  • Thank you for watching ESPN on YouTube for live streaming sports and premium content.

Tim MacMahon has been all over the Rockets for the last couple years here at ESPN.

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James Harden’s block was a redemptive moment – MacMahon | Keyshawn, JWill & Zubin

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    林宜悉 posted on 2020/10/23
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