Rockets’ Chris Paul says playing hard isn’t enough to beat Warriors, smarts also needed
Houston played Golden State about as well as about any team possibly could. According to Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle,
“We just didn’t play smart, simple as that. I think we let their guys get too many shots off. We say it all the time. In order to beat them, regardless of who’s playing, playing hard enough isn’t enough. You’ve got to play smart.”
The was certainly no shortage of effort from the Rockets. Despite the Warriors best efforts, they were able to weather the storm of their best runs throughout the game. Unfortunately, Houston made some costly mistakes down the stretch on defense and it ultimately cost them the game.
Paul was unusually aggressive in the scoring department as opposed to playmaking after scoring 24 points while dishing out just three assists. His backcourt partner James Harden also had a big game with 29 points and ten assists. Although the Rockets were on the cusp of potentially securing a win, moral victories do not do much for them at this point.
Houston is one of the few teams equipped to give Golden State a run for their money. they proved as much after taking them to seven games in the playoffs last year. Paul knows full well that the road to the championship will go through the Warriors in the Western Conference. They will need to be clicking on all cylinders if they hope to beat the reigning champs in a seven-game series.