When Sherman Douglas lights you up for 15 points on 7-9 shooting, you've got a problem.
The previously 4-16 New Jersey Nets decimated the Rockets, leading by as much as 26 points, and cruised to the 106-94 win in New Jersey.
The loss is the Rockets' third straight since Charles Barkley went down. Before that they had won three straight.
Douglas, Stephon Marbury, Keith Van Horn, Kerry Kittles, Kendall Gill and Jamie Feick (yes, Jamie freakin' Feick) all scored 14 points or more -- led by Van Horn with 21.
The Rockets on the other hand dished out 10 assists.
The entire team...
...and Thomas Hamilton had 4 of them!
The damage was evident just about everywhere. 50% shooting for the Nets -- 43% for the Rocks. 16 turnovers for the Rockets -- 5, yes five balls forced out of the Nets' hands. Steals for the Nets? 11. Rockets? 2.
Steve Francis played with the flu, totalling just 22 minutes. He scored early and often in the first quarter and that was it, finishing with 13 points on 5-9 shooting, 3 turnovers, 1 rebound and not a single assist.
Bryce Drew saw the bulk of the time at the one, logging 35 minutes and scoring 18 points on 5-13 shooting. He didn't turn the ball over, but had just 3 assists.
Continuing to play well is Cuttino Mobley, who finished with 18 points and 6 boards, but committed 4 turnovers.
Thomas Hamilton, as mentioned before, had 4 assists (he led the team, handing out the one less assist than Francis, Drew, Mobley and Shandon Anderson combined) and also shot and rebounded well. Tommy Boy hit 6-11 shots for 12 points and grabbed 11 rebounds.
Walt Williams is an enigma.
ESPN had reported in a rumor column that the Rockets have been so disenchanted with his play that they were close to pulling him from the starting role. What's it going to take... the Jaws of Life? Walt is playing less and less -- in fact he logged just 11 minutes against the Nets -- and just is not getting his role done. He was 0-5 from the floor for 0 points.
He has started every game this season and has scored in double digits just 5 times. He's hitting about 38% of his shots and just 30% when dialing from long-range. Check out his season numbers -- they're not pretty.
Sitting the Wizard on the pine may be something that will spark him.
Carlos Rogers scored 12 points to go with 5 boards. Kenny Thomas added 9 points and 8 boards. Matt Bullard 6 points and 5 boards. Kelvin Cato played just 13 minutes (why?), scoring 2 points. Anderson had just 4 points.
It's a game you just got to forget and move on, but this Nets team (albeit they played their best game of the season) has been pathetic this year (they were coming off a loss to the Bulls), and to be down 26 to them shows how the Rockets were completely unorganized and didn't come to play.