Rockets’ Chris Paul, Nene to return Sunday vs. Timberwolves
Nene, who sat out the past two games, and Chris Paul, who sat out on Friday, will return Sunday for the Rockets' vs. Timberwolves. Rockets will return to their usual starting lineup, but Mike D'Antoni said Danuel House Jr., who started on Friday, will play a significant role.
— Jonathan Feigen (@Jonathan_Feigen) March 16, 2019
Both players have missed their past game against the Phoenix Suns, with Chris Paul given the day off to rest. However, their return against the Timberwolves will definitely help their chances of winning, especially since All-Star guard James Harden is questionable to play.
Houston is gearing up for the playoffs, but one of the main concerns about them heading into the postseason is their health. The team has been dealing with injuries all season, and this could once again hurt their chances of contending for the championship.
Paul was believed to be the missing factor in the Rockets’ Game 7 loss against the Golden State Warriors in the Western Conference Finals last season, and if he can’t stay healthy, Houston will definitely have a problem in the postseason.
Nene’s absence isn’t sorely missed now as opposed to earlier in the season, especially with the arrival of Kenneth Faried as a quality back-up for starting center Clint Capela. Still, the Rockets would welcome the idea of him playing on Sunday as it gives them one more body that they can use to defend Minnesota’s Karl Anthony-Towns.
As for Harden, he has been dealing with a cervical strain since last month, and it is wise for Houston to take precautionary measures to ensure that he’s 100 percent healthy moving forward. The Rockets obviously can’t afford a major injury to the All-Star guard.