Rockets coach Mike D’Antoni admits series with the Jazz was ‘a dogfight’
The Houston Rockets dispatched the Utah Jazz in five games for the second consecutive season, but Rockets head coach Mike D’Antoni has a lot of respect for the Jazz and acknowledged how tough these series have been, even if they didn’t go long:
Mike D’Antoni congratulates the Jazz for being a great opponent and “a tough out. … Two years in a row it’s been a dogfight.”
— Eric Walden (@tribjazz) April 25, 2019
It didn’t look like this year’s series was going to be much of a dogfight after two games. The Rockets dominated the Jazz in Games 1 and 2 in Houston, but things started to shift a bit when the series moved to Utah. The Rockets barely edged the Jazz in Game 3 and then got blown out in Game 4, returning the series to Houston.
The Rockets then found themselves in a grind-it-out affair in Wednesday’s Game 5. The Jazz had their chances to steal the game and force a Game 6 back in Utah, but the home team pulled out a 100-93 victory in the end.
While the Jazz are now going home after another hard-fought series loss, the Rockets turn their attention to the second round and a likely matchup against the Golden State Warriors. While the Warriors faltered in Game 5 on their home floor against the Los Angeles Clippers, it would still be an absolute stunner if the two-time defending champions don’t make it through to the next round for the rematch from last year’s Western Conference Finals.
Either way, the Rockets are glad to be done with the scrappy Jazz and some of the gimmicky defense they were using against James Harden.