Rockets-Warriors Preview

The Golden State Warriors have to be feeling good about their

chances of regrouping at home after a winless four-game trip.

Last week’s stop in Houston is surely fresh in their minds.

Golden State tries to snap its longest losing streak of the

season Tuesday night and avenge an especially ugly defeat to a

Rockets team that’s controlled this series of late.

While the Warriors (30-21) have been one of the NBA’s better

clubs over the first half of 2012-13, they allowed an average of

118.5 points and were outscored by 20.7 per game during their

trek.

“It’s very frustrating,” All-Star forward David Lee said. “Not

only losing four games in a row, but in the manner that we lost

them. Every team goes through those ups and downs during the

season. The key for us is to figure it out sooner rather than

later.”

The Warriors saw their woes continue Saturday in a 116-91 loss

at Dallas, their fourth game in five nights. Stephen Curry had 18

points on 8-of-23 shooting and Klay Thompson was limited to 11 –

5.3 less than his season mark – for Golden State, which was

outscored 29-8 in transition.

“We’re fine. There’s no panic,” coach Mark Jackson told the

league’s official website. “We lost another game. We didn’t play

well, we made mistakes, we did not put together 48 minutes of

basketball, but there’s going to be no panic. We’re going to

regroup and be preparing for the next one.”

Winners of four in a row and 15 of their last 19 at home, the

Warriors didn’t appear to be adequately prepared for their visit to

Houston last Tuesday.

Jeremy Lin had 28 points to lead eight players in double figures

as the Rockets (28-25) tied an NBA record and set a franchise mark

with 23 3-pointers in a 140-109 rout. Golden State prevented

Houston, which has won three straight and 15 of 17 in this series,

from setting the record by fouling down the stretch.

“Throughout the whole game, you figured they’d cool off,” Curry

said. “But we have to force them to take tougher shots. You just

can’t give them open looks.”

The Rockets could be hard-pressed to come out with a repeat

performance given their recent efforts on the road. Houston, which

has dropped three straight and nine of 12 in opposing arenas, fell

117-111 at Sacramento in the opener of a three-game trip

Sunday.

Averaging 33.7 points and shooting 63.5 percent over the last

three games, James Harden scored 30 for the Rockets, who let a

10-point, fourth-quarter lead slip away.

“It’s definitely a setback and I feel like we gave this one

away,” said forward Chandler Parsons, whose team visits the Los

Angeles Clippers on Wednesday. “On the road, coming down the

stretch we have to take it. It’s only going to get harder on this

road trip with Golden State and in L.A. … Those games now are a

lot bigger.”

Golden State could be without Jarrett Jack for a fourth

consecutive game due to a bruised shoulder. The veteran point

guard, who scored 20 against the Rockets last week, was averaging

15.9 points and 7.8 assists over a 12-game stretch before getting

hurt.

Still trying to get his left ankle back to full strength,

Warriors center Andrew Bogut is expected to be available after

sitting out the second game of a back-to-back Saturday.