Rockets look to head into All-Star break with momentum

Houston Rockets guard Kevin Porter Jr. (3) reacts after making a 3-point basket against the Chicago Bulls during the second half of an NBA basketball game Monday, Dec. 26, 2022, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Quinn Harris) (Quinn Harris, Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

Hi KPRC2 Insiders,

The Houston Rockets have put together a little streak, and more importantly, it’s the good kind! After a recent rough stretch, the Rockets were able to string together back-to-back wins, including one on the road without some of their key pieces.

News and Notes:

Nursing Injuries

The injury bug has bitten the Rockets right before the All-Star break. Houston, as of now, is missing their starting back-court. Kevin Porter Jr. has missed a few weeks with a toe contusion (ouch) and his guard running-mate, Jalen Green, is now battling a calf issue, but his return is expected over the new couple of games.

The Rockets prized rookie, Jabari Smith Jr., is also banged up, but he is expected to make a return to the lineup over the weekend.

Rising Stars Challenge

Although Houston has the worst record in the league, the talent is there. That’s evident by the NBA’s decision to pick a league-high, three selections to the NBA All-Star “Rising Stars Challenge.”

Jabari Smith Jr., Jalen Green and Alperen Sengun were all selected as one of the best rookie/sophomores to compete in the All-Star Weekend’s annual event. Green and Sengun will be making their second appearance.

This year All-Star weekend will be in Utah and the Rockets will have another representative in Salt Lake City as KJ Martin will participate in the dunk contest.

Tari Eason’s Emergence

One of the players you could argue was snubbed from the Rising Star’s Challenge was rookie forward Tari Eason. Eason has made the most of his opportunities and has provided the Rockets with a real spark off the bench. Over the last three games, he’s averaging 18 points, 11 rebounds, a block and a steal.

Next Up:

Raptors vs Rockets - 7:00 p.m. - Friday

Rockets vs Thunder - 7:00 p.m. - Saturday

Kings vs Rockets - 7:00 p.m. - Monday

Kings vs Rockets - 7:00 p.m. - Wednesday

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