- Geek & Sci-Fi
LeBron James' late-game struggles at the free throw line dominated the narrative of the Houston Rockets' 105-103 overtime win over the Cleveland Cavaliers. The King's failings from the stripe benefited James Harden from than a competitive perspective, too – they took the spotlight off his bush-league kick to LeBron's crotch in the third quarter.
Should we start calling him The Fisher King.
A strange game for LeBron James only got stranger with the game on the line. After tussling with Patrick Beverley, getting kicked in the groin by James Harden, and being subject to a spate equally puzzling calls and no-calls from the opening tip, The King missed a pair of free throws that would have put his team ahead in the final seconds of overtime.
Intensity during today's game between the Houston Rockets and Cleveland Cavaliers was already at a rising simmer. After James Harden fell to the floor and intentionally kicked LeBron James below the belt, it's a wonder that it hasn't boiled over entirely.
How many times have we seen this from LeBron James? And how many times have defenders like James Harden opted against challenging The King at the rim?
Kyrie Irving's strained left shoulder won't be a long-term issue. But that hardly helps ease disappointment of news that he'll miss the Cleveland Cavaliers' Sunday Showcase matchup with the Houston Rockets later today.
James Harden was a facilitator last night because of his shooting struggles. But his step-back jumper sealed it in the final minute.
James Harden is basketball's leading scorer. He grabs six rebounds and dishes seven assists per game while ranking third in steals, too. The Houston Rockets superstar might be the league's MVP frontrunner less than three full seasons removed from winning Sixth Man of the Year.
Andrew Wiggins was doing an admirable defending James Harden. As the third quarter clock wound down, though, the Houston Rockets MVP candidate drew a defensive assignment other than the Minnesota Timberwolves rookie.
The 2015 NBA Trade Deadline has come and gone. Now we have to rummage through the aftereffects rubble for the 10 most important moves.
The Houston Rockets not only stole K.J. McDaniels on deadline day, but managed to upgrade their backup point guard spot, too. According to Marc Berman of The New York Post, Kevin McHale's team acquired veteran Pablo Prigioni from the New York Knicks for a pair of late second-rounders and seldom-used reserve Alexey Shved.
K.J. McDaniels has long been a favorite in these parts, and now the hyper-disruptive rookie will get a chance to charm a national audience. According to Yahoo Sports Adrian Wojnarowski, the Philadelphia 76ers have traded McDaniels to the Houston Rockets in exchange for Isaiah Canaan and a second-round pick.
James Harden is never included in the debate about basketball's best point guard. His consensus nominal position is off-guard, after all, and the Houston Rockets MVP candidate boasts the numbers to prove it – he leads the league in scoring at 27.4 points per game. But that nomenclature and scoring production belies crucial context. Harden is his team's primary ballhandler and top playmaker, and is as natural a passer as close to any player in basketball. Even if his hoops id was more aligned with a traditional shooting guard's, though, The Beard says his team's roster necessitates embracing his floor general side.
After Daryl Morey sent a tweet out criticizing Charles Barkley for his comments about the Rockets, Barkley responded by calling him an idiot and going on a rambling diatribe about NBA analytics.
The Houston Rockets' Josh Smith isn't the all-around athlete he used to be. Even at the height of his ultra-versatile defensive powers, though, we doubt J-Smoove could stop Markieff Morris when the Phoenix Suns forward challenges him with intentions like this.
The Phoenix Suns turned the ball over when trying to pass the ball after a made Rockets bucket. It's the exact same mistake the Heat made last week.
James Harden recently told Bleacher Report, "I'm a great defender." And he says it knowing full well most people disagree. So how much better at defense is Harden, really this year? We try and figure his comment out.
Who does James Harden think he is.
The entire league is having trouble defending James Harden.