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NBA Preview: Houston Rockets (13-45) at Golden State Warriors (29-30)

When the Houston Rockets come to San Francisco on Friday night for a battle of floundering teams, it seems like the Golden State Warriors are getting exactly what they need.

On Thursday, the Warriors suffered their second double-digit defeat in a row in Los Angeles, falling 124-111 to the Lakers in a game that was not nearly as close as the final score would have you believe.

The Warriors were only able to use 11 players because Stephen Curry, Andrew Wiggins, and four other players were out, and they were 28 points behind and lost badly on the same court for the second game in a row. In the final game before the All-Star break, Golden State was defeated by the Clippers 134-124.

Nine days apart, there was more consistency than just the lopsided loss. Both were also played without Curry, who skipped the All-Star Game in an effort to speed up his recovery from a slight left knee ligament tear.

The day before the Lakers game, Curry was able to do some light exercise in Los Angeles. However, the Warriors later issued an update stating that it would be another week before he was even examined again, let alone considered for possible return to action.

In two previous encounters with the Rockets, Curry recorded two double-doubles: 33 points and 15 assists in a victory on the road in November and 30 points and 10 assists in a victory at home in December.

Additionally, it is likely that the Warriors, who are vying for the final playoff spot in the play-in tournament, will have to contend once more without Wiggins. He was taking care of a family issue while he was away from the team during the All-Star break.

Curry was challenged by former Northern California prep star Jalen Green when Golden State last played Houston. Green responded with 16 and 13 points in the two previous encounters. Green, on the other hand, will join Curry on the sidelines this time because he injured his left groin in Houston’s most recent game, a 133-96 loss to the host Oklahoma City Thunder on Feb. 15.

Houston’s poor health continues, even though it will play for the first time in nine days. The Rockets will be without their top two scorers because Kevin Porter Jr. is still out with a toe injury.

Eric Gordon, John Wall, and Danny Green, all of whom were acquired or traded in the previous week, will also not be available to the Rockets.

Rafael Stone, the general manager of the Rockets, suggested that opponents attack his team now before it reloads through the draft and free agency leading up to the following season after watching his team lose seven games in a row and fall to the bottom of the overall NBA standings with only 13 wins.

With Green and Porter out of action on Friday, TyTy Washington Jr. is expected to make his debut. In Porter’s absence, the rookie has seen his bench time increase, and he responded with a career-best 20-point performance in a five-game stretch in which he has played 19 or more minutes four times.

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