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 Katrina McClain, Naismith, USBWA, and Wooden awards.

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Rockets Ime Udoka Named Western Conference Coach of the Month for March

Posted: April 2, 2024 -- 4:13 p.m. CT

Today, the NBA announced that Rockets head coach Ime Udoka was named Western Conference Coach of the Month for March. He is the seventh different coach to have won the award in franchise history and the first since Mike D'Antoni in February of 2020. During his stint as head coach of Boston in 2021-22, Udoka was named Eastern Conference Coach of the Month in February and for the combined months of March and April. He has a career coaching record of 24-5 in March.

The Rockets went 13-2 in March despite being without leading scorer and rebounder Alperen Sengun for the final 10 games and playing without their top bench scorer Cam Whitmore for nine games.

Houston won 11 straight games from March 8-29, tying for its longest streak since a 17-game span during 2017-18. The Rockets have also won their past seven road games after only having five road wins prior this season.

The Rockets outscored opponents by an average of 9.3 points per game in March. Houston won six consecutive games by double-digits from March 14-25, tying for the third-longest streak in franchise history. The Rockets scored at least 125 points in three straight games from March 19-23, marking their longest streak since a three-game span in November of 1979.

Houston is 38-36 this season after going 22-60 in 2022-23. That is the fifth-best improvement in win totals from one season to the next in franchise history. The Rockets are outscoring opponents by an average of 1.6 points per game this season after being outscored by a league-high 8.1 ppg over the past three seasons combined.

This season, the Rockets rank 10th in scoring defense, sixth in field goal defense and second in 3-point defense. Over the past three seasons combined, Houston ranked last in scoring defense, 28th in field goal defense and 26th in 3-point defense. The Rockets are on pace to set the franchise record for averaging the fewest turnovers in a single season after committing the most turnovers in the league over the past three seasons. Houston is also allowing the fewest fast break points this season after giving up the most over the past three seasons.

Houston currently trails Golden State by 2.0 games for the Western Conference's final spot in the NBA Play-In Tournament. The Rockets host the Warriors at Toyota Center on April 4.

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