Last night in Houston, the Rockets employed the "Hack-A-Howard" system to perfection as they beat the Lakers 107-105. The Lakers had a 16-point advantage at one point but let it slip away as the Rockets picked things up in the second act. The Rockets' stars were underwhelming but Toney Douglas and Greg Smith picked up the slack with a combined 43 points off the bench. Here's more on the Rockets..
- Chris Ballard of SportsIllustrated.com profiled Rockets General Manager Daryl Morey and his unorthodox approach to the game. Some observers would say that the Rockets landed James Harden simply by being in the right place at the right time, but in reality they were able to make the trade because they had the right pieces stockpiled.
- Jeremy Lin has struggled in the early goings with his new club, but Lakers coach Mike D'Antoni believes that the amount of criticism he has received is unfair, writes Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle. “He’s not Linsanity, but everybody goes too crazy one way and too crazy the other way,” D’Antoni said. “He’s a very good point guard in a tough league. A very good point guard. I think he’s been playing well of late. I think as he goes on, he’s going to play even better.”
- Interim coach Kelvin Sampson's opportunity in Houston has come under horrible circumstances, but he is showing that he can be a future head coach in the NBA, tweets Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports. Sampson previously served as the head coach of the University of Oklahoma and Indiana University before allegations of NCAA violations pushed him to the NBA.