Rockets Hold Team Meeting After Loss To Blazers

Rockets have lost 3-of-4 after Wednesday's loss

Adam Spolane
January 16, 2020 - 1:59 am

HOUSTON (SportsRadio 610)- Mike D'Antoni took longer than normal to take the podium for his postgame press conference Wednesday night. 

"Actually, I forgot," D'Antoni joked after finally arriving before revealing the real reason for his tardiness. 

"I was talking with the guys and trying to work some things out and (Rockets media relations director Tracey Hughes) reminded me that I had to do my job."

The Rockets held a team meeting following a 117-107 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers, their second in as many nights and third in four games. 

"We're not sharp," D'Antoni said. "We ran into two teams that were hungry, hungrier than we are, and until we get everything sharp we gotta have a little bit more energy and a little bit more focus in what we're doing and tighten things up and not play great but get wins and we didn't do that the last two games."

The Rockets never led Wednesday after the first quarter and trailed by as many as 17 against a team that entered the night seven games under .500. The night before they were blitzed in the fourth quarter against another team with more losses than wins in Memphis. 

"I think everyone goes through tough times throughout the course of the year," James Harden said. "For us, this is now and we gotta come together and figure out what the problem is and go out there and try to fight through it."

Austin Rivers said Russell Westbrook took charge in the meeting, and Westbrook says it's pretty simple what has to happen in order for the Rockets to get back on track.

"Play hard, everything else will fall in line."

While Harden finished Wednesday's game with a season-low 13 points, Westbrook, who didn't play Tuesday night in Memphis, led the Rockets with his seventh triple-double of the season, and says he isn't concerned about this bump in the road.

"The real measurement of a man is where you stand during adversity. I live for things like that, and I know the guys in the locker room are feeling the same way. We just gotta stay with it."

Coming off a back-to-back, the Rockets will not practice Thursday, so they'll re-convene Friday prior to Saturday's showdown with the Los Angeles Lakers and with that day off upcoming, Harden says it was good to have a meeting late Wednesday night. 

"Obviously there’s a lot of different emotions. Everybody’s their own person that feels some type of way about whatever’s going on individually and as a unit, so you speak about it and get it off your chest.”