Ariza out, Martin in as Rockets starter

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Ariza.jpgTrevor Ariza has a pretty serious hip pointer, one that is going to keep him out at least the three remaining games this week.

Kevin Martin, come on down…

Martin has struggled adjusting to his new team so far, going 8 or 28 from the field (28.6 percent) in two games. Not exactly the sharpshooter imagined in Houston, although Martin is too good a shooter to be that bad for long. Right now he is just pushing, not playing in a natural flow at all. He finally got in a couple practices with his new team in recent days, which should help. The Rockets aren’t worried, the move to get Martin was less about this year than next anyway — he will get a lot of open looks outside with Yao Ming inside next season.

Ariza’s injury is not serious (he had an MRI), just painful. He injured it on Feb. 6 and was in and out of the lineup for a couple games, now he is getting the chance to rest it properly. He will be re-evaluated next week. Kyle Lowry also will miss this week’s games.

The Rockets have lost five of their last six, and it will be hard to turn that around against the Magic, Spurs and Jazz this week.