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Rockets' Tucker: "They Played Harder Than Us"

P.J. Tucker says Rockets didn't play hard enough in their game two loss

May 03, 2018 - 12:40 am

HOUSTON (SportsRadio 610)- P.J. Tucker's explanation for why the Utah Jazz won game two Wednesday night at Toyota Center was quite simple.

"(We) Didn’t play hard enough," the Rockets forward said. "From the beginning they outplayed us, they played harder than us, they played smarter than us. Communication was terrible, bunch of stuff piled on.”

After holding the Jazz to 39 points in a convincing game one win Sunday, the Rockets allowed the Jazz to score 64 points on 56 percent shooting in the first half Wednesday, and after saying his team didn't play as hard as it's opponent, Tucker was asked if its tough to admit something like that.

"It’s tough," he admitted. "It’s tough. That’s the hardest thing you can say. It was miss shots or whatever, that’s fine It happens. But, they just played harder than us period, and that can never happen in game two of the playoffs at home. That can’t happen, we can’t get out played.”

As the Rockets head to Salt Lake City needing to win one of the next two games to avoid having to face elimination next Tuesday, Tucker knows what must improve in order for his team's defense to get back to where it needs to be.

"We just not talking, at the end of the day we’re just not talking. Situations like pin downs, screens, slip offs, wherever the situation talking it out and telling each other what’s going on, and we’ve been doing it covers man because you can’t guard it, you got two guys that are uncontested and they’re attacking, so we give up a layups, and bunch of wide open shots, they made them. Give them credit for that. But we’re definitely going to look at ourselves first.”

Game three is Friday night.