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Mike D’Antoni admits Rockets-Jazz series is ‘nowhere near over’

Mike D'Antoni, Rockets, Jazz

Despite his team being up 3-1 and having Game 5 at home, Houston Rockets head coach Mike D’Antoni says the series with the Utah Jazz is “nowhere near over.”

The Rockets lost Game 4 in Utah, a contest in which D’Antoni said Houston didn’t play with the “appropriate fear.” Game 5 is on Wednesday, and while D’Antoni thinks they are still in good position,  he knows they can’t be complacent like they did the last time out.

The Rockets will be heavy favorites to win Game 5 at home. Houston blew out the Jazz in Games 1 and 2 behind the stellar play of superstar James Harden.

A case could be made that the Rockets have more pressure in Game 5 than the Jazz since it’s a closeout game for them. No one is expecting the Jazz to win, so they are playing with house money from here on out.

Harden is averaging 28.3 points in the series, but he’s shooting 37.1 percent from the field and 37.5 percent from beyond the arc. The reigning MVP shot just 3-of-20 in Game 3 and 8-of-19 in Game 4. However, odds are Harden will shoot better in Game 5 since the Rockets are at home.

Houston won Game 1 by 32 points and Game 2 by 20. Stopping Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell will be the easiest way for the Rockets to win Game 5. He played really in Game 4 and hit some big shots late in the fourth quarter.