Just last night, the Golden State Warriors prevented a season-series sweep against the Houston Rockets.
Many consider the Warriors to be the unmatched favorites to win the title, especially after signing DeMarcus Cousins last offseason. There are many other great teams in the league, capable of taking on the Warriors. The Bucks, Raptors, Celtics and Thunder are all teams at the top of the league, but it seems that the Rockets are the most capable team in the league of taking them on.
The Houston Rockets hold a 3-1 regular season series lead over the Warriors. Back in the 2018 playoffs, the Rockets actually held a 3-2 series lead in the WCF before Chris Paul went down with a hamstring injury. Not only does this prove that the Rockets have what it takes to keep up with the defending champs, but this also show that they may be one of the only teams in the league that can actually beat them in a playoff series.
The Rockets took the defending champs to 7 games during last year’s playoffs, but now their team looks improved. They’ve added a few key pieces in Kenneth Faried, Austin Rivers, Gary Clark and Danuel House. Furthermore, Harden and Capela are having career seasons, and Paul has certainly bounced back from his poor start to the season.
But can they take down the Warriors? The Warriors boast a lineup of Curry, Thompson, Durant, Green and Cousins, whom are all All-Star level players. The Rockets currently are the first seed in the Western Conference, and have proven this season that they are one of the best teams in the league right now. It’s taken a while for them to fit Cousins into their lineup, with that 5-man group having a negative net rating thus far. However, as time progresses, they could be able to eventually work things out.
In my opinion, the Rockets are the greatest threat to the Warriors, but the question remains to be seen if they could take them out in a playoff series.