‘We needed something’: Frustration boils over for Rockets, ejected head coach Stephen Silas

Even with a short-handed roster, CJ McCollum and the Pelicans easily had enough to hold off visiting Houston during Wednesday’s uncompetitive 119-108 result (box score) in New Orleans. The Rockets, who lost head coach Stephen Silas early in the game due to an officiating rant, have now lost 10 of their last 11 games overall.

Houston (10-28) remains in last place in the Western Conference, while the Pelicans (24-14) are within a game of first place.

The Rockets were overwhelmed from the opening tipoff and trailed by as many as 31 points in the first half, though they made the final respectable amid strong efforts by Jabari Smith Jr. (14 points, 13 rebounds, 2 steals) and KJ Martin (16 points, 7-of-7 shooting, 2 steals). The defensive effort appeared to improve under lead assistant John Lucas, who took over as acting coach after the departure of Silas.

It was a forgettable night for Houston’s starting backcourt of Kevin Porter Jr. and Jalen Green, with both guards struggling defensively while combining to score 27 points on 9-of-26 shooting (34.6%).

That wasn’t nearly enough versus the Pelicans and McCollum, who scored a game-high 28 points on 10-of-21 shooting (47.6%) and 5-of-11 from 3-point range (45.5%) — all while dishing out 6 assists and not turning the ball over a single time. Veteran center Jonas Valanciunas added 16 points and a game-high 17 rebounds.

Brandon Ingram (left great toe contusion) and Zion Williamson (right hamstring strain) were both out for New Orleans due to injury.

Scroll on for highlights, analysis, and postgame interview reaction from Smoothie King Center. Houston returns to action on Thursday night at home, with the tip from Toyota Center at 7 p.m. Central.

Highlights

Analysis and Interviews

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Story originally appeared on Rockets Wire