Rockets blast Kings as Dillon Brooks, Jabari Smith Jr. shine

In the third game of their season-long homestand at Toyota Center, the Houston Rockets (2-3) notched their first winning streak with a resounding 107-89 victory over the Sacramento Kings (2-3). Dillon Brooks and Jabari Smith Jr. were standout performers on offense, combining for 47 points. Both players shot an impressive 60% from the field and 50% from beyond the arc. Defensively, the Rockets stifled the Kings, limiting them to their lowest point total of the season. Sacramento had scored over 100 points in each of their previous four games but could only muster 89 against Houston. Malik Monk contributed 18 points off the bench.

Houston’s key players made significant contributions. Dillon Brooks scored 26 points, grabbed 9 rebounds, and had a plus-minus of +25 in 38 minutes on the court. He shot 64.3% from the field, 50% from three-point range, and was perfect from the free-throw line. Jabari Smith Jr. recorded 21 points, 11 rebounds, and a plus-minus of +4 in 35 minutes. He shot 60% from the field and 50% from three-point range. Alperen Sengun contributed 15 points, 9 rebounds, 6 assists, and 2 steals in 34 minutes. Sengun’s defensive effort against Kings star center Domantas Sabonis, who finished with 11 points and 15 rebounds, was commendable as Sacramento was outscored by 26 points during his time on the court. Fred VanVleet scored 21 points, dished out 12 assists, and snatched 6 rebounds in 36 minutes. Jalen Green contributed 10 points and 5 assists. Jae’Sean Tate added 11 points and 4 rebounds in just 21 minutes of play.

Fans and media celebrated the Rockets’ impressive win against a quality opponent. Jackson Gatlin praised the team’s control of the game and exceptional defense. Adam Spolane highlighted the Rockets’ quick turnaround in securing their second win of the season, emphasizing the team’s significant improvement compared to previous years. Michael Shapiro highlighted Dillon Brooks’ exceptional shooting efficiency so far this season. Kelly Iko commended the Rockets’ defense, acknowledging that it will give them a competitive edge throughout the season. Ben DuBose highlighted the positive impact of having Fred VanVleet, Dillon Brooks, and Alperen Sengun on the court together.

Despite struggling offensively in the third quarter, the Rockets managed to maintain their lead through stellar defense. Roosh praised Dillon Brooks for his outstanding performance on both ends of the court, particularly his defensive prowess. David Weiner applauded Jalen Green for his decision-making and passing, even amidst struggles with his shooting and defense. Ime Udoka emphasized the team’s focus on rebounding, which paid off in the victory. Paulo Alves highlighted Alperen Sengun and Fred VanVleet’s exceptional playmaking abilities. Itamar pointed out the strong overall performance by the starters and Jalen Green’s impressive behind-the-back assist to wrap up the game. Nathan Fogg noted Dillon Brooks’ scoring efficiency, averaging 18 points per game on an incredible 75.2% true shooting percentage. Lachard Binkley spoke highly of Fred VanVleet’s leadership and calming influence on the court, as acknowledged by Coach Udoka.

The Rockets’ victory was a significant step forward for the team, and they will look to continue their winning ways in their upcoming rematch against the Kings on Monday.


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