In a matchup of two young teams on fairly similar rebuilding timelines, the Rockets easily defeated the Thunder by 33 points during their previous meeting on Friday, Oct. 22 in Houston. Since then, however, the fortunes of both franchises have changed in a dramatic way leading into Wednesday’s rematch in Oklahoma City.
The Thunder are 5-6 since that first game, with four wins in their last six contests. Meanwhile, the Rockets are 0-12 since, and they’ve become increasingly uncompetitive in recent days. Houston has been outscored by an average of 18.6 points during its last five losses, and by an average of 30 points in two losses this week to Phoenix and Memphis.
Will those trends continue, or might both teams be due for a slight course correction? Here’s when you should tune in to see it play out:
Date: Wednesday, Nov. 17
Time: 7 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 (1-13)
Guard: Kevin Porter Jr.
Guard: Jalen Green
Forward: Jae’Sean Tate
Forward: Christian Wood
Center: Daniel Theis
Oklahoma City Thunder (5-8)
Projected lineups are based on each team’s game notes. Both teams feature a rookie shooting guard who was taken very high in the first round of the 2021 NBA draft, with Houston starting Jalen Green (the No. 2 overall pick) and Oklahoma City countering with Josh Giddey (No. 6).
As for injuries, starting point guard Kevin Porter Jr. left early in Houston’s Monday loss due to a left thigh contusion, which he first injured about 10 days earlier. As such, since it’s a re-aggravation, it shouldn’t come as a surprise if the Rockets are more conservative in their treatment protocol this time around. On the team’s injury report, he’s officially listed as questionable for Wednesday’s game at Oklahoma City.
The Thunder have no listed injuries on their status report.