The Rockets were near maximum levels of obsession with beating the Warriors last season.
After losing to Golden State in the Western Conference finals, how much more driven could Houston be?
“It’s on my mind every day. It’s Game 6, Game 7, that’s what drives me every day,” Harden said.
This can be the Rockets’ edge next season. They should be extremely motivated after falling short last year. It’s the type of disappointment that sometimes propels good teams to greatness – or, in this case, a great team even greater.
The Warriors can’t match that. Sure, they’ll also be motivated and work hard. But after consecutive championships and three titles in the last four years, Golden State can’t simply summon the hunger that comes naturally in Houston.
While the Warriors added DeMarcus Cousins this offseason, the Rockets lost Trevor Ariza and Luc Mbah a Moute and settled for cheap replacements in Carmelo Anthony and James Ennis. The gap in roster quality between these teams increased this year.
To have a chance, Houston’s determination must surpass Golden State’s by a great deal.
Harden sounds like his might.