James Harden says Rockets can compete with anybody when healthy
On Fright night, the Houston Rockets destroyed the San Antonio Spurs Friday in one of the team’s best performances of the young season. Following the 136-105 drubbing, Rockets star James Harden stated that despite their recent struggles, he believes that so long as they are healthy, his team can still compete with the best of the best in the league.
“We know — we’re a very confident group — that when we have all of our players and we have a healthy roster that we can compete with anybody in the league,” said Harden, via Tim MacMahon of ESPN. “When you’re shorthanded and you’re playing six guys, it makes it tough on any team. Hopefully, we can continue to stay healthy and ride this wave.”
It is worth noting that Friday marked the return of Chris Paul from a hamstring issue, which kept him out for the past three games. Incidentally, the Rockets lost all three of those games without their star point guard.
As Harden explained, the Rockets are a different team with Paul in the mix. The 33-year-old did not have the best of games against the Spurs, and Paul did show a bit of rust. He notched a 13-point, 10-assist double-double, but shot only 5-of-13 from the floor.
Nonetheless, his mere presence was a boost for the Rockets, who have found life difficult without Harden’s backcourt partner-in-crime. Fortunately for the team, Paul appears to have shaken off the hamstring injury, and he looks good to go for the team’s upcoming three-game road trip next week.