Defense has been a clear problem of late for the Rockets, who are 1-9 in their last 10 games and have allowed 130 or more points four times in that run. That includes Friday’s blowout loss to Dallas, and two nights later, Houston hopes to make amends on that same Toyota Center court.
To turn the tables on Sunday, the Rockets will need a much better effort versus a young and athletic Timberwolves squad that ranks No. 6 in the NBA in defensive rating. As a result, attempting to simply outscore them in a high-scoring affair isn’t likely to bring the desired result.
Instead, Houston likely needs to take advantage of Minnesota’s weaker side — its No. 24-ranked offense — with a much more focused and energetic effort than the lethargic showing versus the Mavericks.
The Rockets have plenty of young players who can create and score, headlined by Jalen Green, Kevin Porter Jr., and Christian Wood, but their challenge as the 2021-22 regular season hits its mid-point is to see many of those younger players start to show growth on defense, as well.
When and How to Watch
Date: Sunday, Jan. 9
Time: 6 p.m. Central
TV Channel: AT&T SportsNet Southwest, NBA League Pass
Live Stream: fuboTV (watch for free in Houston markets)
Probable starting lineups
Houston Rockets (11-29)Guard: Kevin Porter Jr. Guard: Jalen Green Forward: Eric Gordon Forward: Jae’Sean Tate Center: Christian Wood
Minnesota Timberwolves (19-20)Guard: D’Angelo Russell Guard: Patrick Beverley Forward: Anthony Edwards Forward: Jarred Vanderbilt Center: Karl-Anthony Towns
Both lineups are from each team’s latest game notes.
For Minnesota, Patrick Beverley is questionable with right groin soreness, while Leandro Bolmaro is out due to health and safety protocols.
As for Houston’s injury/status report, Usman Garuba is sidelined in the NBA’s health and safety protocol, while Alperen Sengun is out with a right ankle sprain. Garrison Mathews is questionable with a left ankle sprain.
Source : https://rocketswire.usatoday.com/lists/timberwolves-at-rockets-sundays-lineups-injury-reports-broadcast-and-stream-info/436