The Houston Roundball Review is an online basketball publication
by: Kris Gardner, United States Basketball Writers Association member. Credentialed media member since 1997. USBWA approved online journalist. Voter of Lowe's Senior CLASS, Naismith, USBWA, and Wooden awards.

Houston Roundball Review Archive: December 2006 men's hoops MP3s

Sunday, December 31, 2006
T-Mac's 38 Helps Rockets Edge Memphis 111-109

HOUSTON, TX (Toyota Center) -- If you weren't at Toyota Center Sunday night, you missed one exciting ball game between the Houston Rockets and the Memphis Grizzlies (7-25).

Tracy McGrady scored a game-high 38 points to lead the Rockets to a 111 to 109 victory.

McGrady shot 15 for 30 from the field including 5 for 8 from the Land of Three.

Juwan Howard was solid once again.

Howard scored 22 points (5 for 10 from the field and 12 for 13 from the foul line) and pulled down seven boards.

Memphis' swingman Mike Miller led the Grizzlies with 32 points.

Miller was on fire tonight. He hit 12 of his 17 field goal attempts including a red-hot 7 for 10 from behind the arc.

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Saturday, December 30, 2006
Coogs lose to Runnin' Rebels 78-62

HOUSTON, TX (Hofheinz Pavilion) -- I'm going to start with post-game comments from Houston Cougars' head coach Tom Penders first following Houston's ugly 78 to 62 loss to the UNLV Runnin' Rebels (13-2) Saturday night at Hofheinz Pavilion.

Coach Penders saw the game differently than I did; so, listen to his comments: "...try to penetrate..."

The Cougars jacked up 24 three-point shots in the first half and made just three of them.

Amazingly, Houston trailed by only eight points (34 to 26) at halftime.

UH attempted just nine shots from two-point range in the game's opening 20 minutes.

The Cougars were close mainly because UNLV made just 11 of their 28 field goal attempts in the half.

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Friday, December 29, 2006
Rockets Completely Overwhelm Hawks 94-68

HOUSTON, TX (Toyota Center) -- Friday night, the Houston Rockets played a complete basketball game; and, the Atlanta Hawks were the hapless victims of such a complete performance.

The Rockets defeated the Hawks 94 to 68 before a soldout crowd (18,134) at Toyota Center.

Tracy McGrady led all scorers with 31 points (in just 27 minutes and 37 seconds).

McGrady found an offensive groove in the second quarter and stayed in that groove while he was on the court.

T-Mac scored 18 points in the second period and 26 points in the first half.

McGrady torched any Hawks defender coach Mike Woodson placed on him.

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Saturday, December 23, 2006
Luther Head talks about losing Yao for 6 weeks and losing to the Clips

HOUSTON, TX (Toyota Center) -- Despite scoring 22 points, including a season-high five 3-pointers (5 for 8), Luther Head was not happy.

Not only did the Rockets blow a 48 to 39 lead at halftime to the Los Angeles Clippers in a 98 to 93 loss, the worse news is Rockets center Yao Ming will miss at least six weeks with a fracture in his right knee.

Luther said there's "...still no excuse for losing this game."

Ironically, the Rockets played well after Yao Ming's injury in the first quarter; however, the team defense completely collapsed in the second half as the Clippers scored 59 points on 66.7% (20 for 30) field goal shooting.

Six Clippers scored in double figures led by a season-high 21 points from forward Tim Thomas.

Shane Battier led all scorers with a game-high 28 points.

In addition to Battier's points and 22 points from Luther Head, Rafer Alston added 21.

The Rockets (16-11) head back on the road for a quick two game trip to Indiana (12/26) and New Jersey (12/27).

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JVG discusses Yao's injury and loss to Clips

HOUSTON, TX (Toyota Center) -- Jeff Van Gundy spoke to the media after Saturday's loss to the Los Angeles Clippers in his usual matter-of-fact way.

First, he said he felt bad for Yao Ming and the injury which will keep the Rockets' big man out of action for at least six weeks.

Then, JVG chided his team for their porous defense in the second half which led to the Rockets' 98 to 93 loss to the Clips.

The Rockets wasted a good first half and a 48 to 39 halftime lead by allowing 59 second half points to the Clippers.

Next, Van Gundy told the media the Rockets have enough to win games as they are currently constructed; but, the team needs to make a few changes in play-calling and attitude.

JVG compared the Rockets to his 1999 New York Knicks team which lost center Patrick Ewing to injury. That Knicks team reached the NBA Finals that season.

Lastly, JVG wished everyone a Merry Christmas.

Listen to Jeff Van Gundy's post-game press conference: "...I feel bad for Yao..."

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Yao Ming out at least six weeks with knee injury

HOUSTON, TX (Toyota Center) -- Yao Ming, the best center in the NBA, and the Houston Rockets best player in 2006 will be out a minimum of six weeks with a fracture to the tibial plateau of his right knee.

The injury occurred at the 6:17 mark of the first quarter during Saturday night's Rockets - Los Angeles Clippers' game.

Yao was rolled into by teammate Chuck Hayes.

Yao collapsed to the floor clutching his right knee.

He was helped off the court; and, the original diagnosis was a bone bruise to his right knee.

An MRI was done later and a fracture was noticed in his knee.

Listen to Rockets' athletic trainer Keith Jones discuss the injury: "...minimum of six weeks..."

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Wednesday, December 20, 2006
Willis Wilson after Owls Defeat Prairie View

HOUSTON, TX (Autry Court) -- Wednesday night at Autry Court, the Rice Owls (5-4) defeated the Prairie View A&M Panthers 82 to 65 before a crowd of 1,175 fans.

Rice shot 71.1% (27 for 38 -- yes, just 38 shot attempts) for the game; however, head coach Willis Wilson was not completely satisfied with his team's effort.

Why?

32 turnovers!

Also, the Panthers picked up 25 offensive boards as well.

This game was really never in doubt from the opening tip; but, the Owls did not do themselves any favors with so many turnovers in the second half.

Owls' All-American Morris Almond scored 28 points (6 of 8 from the field, 3 for 5 on threes, 13 for 15 from the free throw line) in just 32 minutes.

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Tuesday, December 12, 2006
JVG after the Rockets' 102 to 94 loss to the Lakers

HOUSTON, TX (Toyota Center) -- The Houston Rockets played well; crappy; and exciting basketball all in one game.

Thanks to 12 first-quarter points from Yao Ming, the Rockets led the LA Lakers 25 to 21 after the first 12 minutes.

Then, the Rockets' defense disappeared.

The Lakers carved up the Rockets over the second and third quarters and outscored Houston 63 to 39 during that span.

LA led by as much as 27 points.

Trailing 94 to 73 in the fourth quarter, the Rockets went on a 19 to 0 run to pull within two points (94 to 92) with 1:38 left in the game.

Houston would get no closer; and, the Lakers won by eight points.

After the game, Jeff Van Gundy spoke to the media and stated matter-of-factly "...they sliced us up good..."

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Luther Head after Rockets' Loss to Lakers

HOUSTON, TX (Toyota Center) -- Take a listen to Houston Rockets' guard Luther Head's post-game comments after the Rockets 102 to 94 loss to the LA Lakers.

Houston trailed the Lakers 94 to 73 with 7:34 left in the fourth quarter; then, they went on a 19 to 0 run to trim the deficit to two points.

Luther scored a career-high 21 points (including 11 in the fourth) in the game; however, he blamed the Rockets' awful third quarter on "...dumb mistakes..."

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Tuesday, December 5, 2006
JVG and T-Mac after Rockets Rout of Warriors

HOUSTON, TX (Toyota Center) -- Tuesday night the Houston Rockets did what good teams do -- they dominated a wounded, outmanned basketball team.

The Rockets defeated the Golden State Warriors 118 to 90; and, the final score is not a clear enough indication just how dominant the Rockets were throughout the ball game.

Houston (12-5) led the Warriors (9-10) by as much as 33 points during the game.

The Warriors played last night (and lost by 40); and, they were without key player JasonRichardson.

The Rockets showed no mercy.

Houston took complete advantage of big man Yao Ming in the first quarter as Yao dominated the shorter and smaller Warriors with 17 points in the first quarter on 8 of 10 shooting from the field.

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