The Houston Rockets made a seemingly unprecedented move when they traded away big man Clint Capela, internally deciding to never play anyone taller than 6-foot-9. Instead of a balanced frontcourt, Mike D’Antoni opted to strictly adapt small ball as a team philosophy.

As the season went on, the Rockets relied more and more on their small ball style; with Rockets coach Mike D’Antoni refusing to adjust or play anyone other than his set-in-stone rotation.

On the Locked On Rockets Podcast, host Jackson Gatlin explained why that inability to adjust — contrasted with the Lakers —i s to blame for the 3-1 series deficit.

Jackson Gatlin: The biggest thing, and this is the most frustrating thing to see, is somebody who you know talks about the Rockets all the time is seeing a coach actively throughout a series make adjustments and changes. So the Rockets came out of the gate — and this is this has been the entirety of Mike D'Antoni in Houston — he’s got a hell of a first punch. It's a really good first punch. We saw that in game one BAM first punch Rockets take a 1-0 series lead, right?Everybody's on top of the world.

And then they come back and they make adjustments. Frank Vogel makes the defense of adjustments the Lakers instituting those changes and suddenly life is hell for Russell Westbrook. He can't find himself in this offense and they are double teaming and trapping James Harden. Russell Westbrook has a really abominable Game 2 and everything derailed for the Rockets in that game, too. Even though all the role players showed up and they had a really great all around game from everybody not named Russ.

The adjustments were clear, and then they built on those adjustments in Game 3. Javale McGee only playing eight minutes in Game 3, Dwight Howard getting no minutes. Then here's the thing right? They come to Game 4 that Frank Vogel completely decides to say ‘screw it we playing small ball, we’re not playing big anymore.’ And kudos to him. It takes balls to change your to change your entire makeup of what got you to be the number one seed to change that up to make that adjustment. You realize, hey this is a better way for us to play basketball in this matchup against this team.