Chris Paul gives a recital against the Rockets and sends them to the seventh

The point guard, a Houston player last year, led Oklahoma's victory. Westbrook, the player he got traded for, was horrible.


When the Rockets traded Chris Paul last summer to accommodate Harden's friend, Russell Westbrook, on his side many wondered what had happened to the old one and if the new one was going to submit to dictation. the answers have not yet come. Paul is a difficult character but an absolutely extraordinary point guard and Westbrook took an MVP from his now-pal Harden. Much level, but that is not the discussion: questions, answers and, above all, solutions. Nothing and everything is clear, a bloody war to be right in this dispute more of dispatches than of court. And Paul can already be satisfied. He endures in a team in which he was not supposed to continue after the start of the season and has led a team that comes out of firing its two stars to the postseason and pushing its exes to the limit, who are already in a Game 7 of the first round, with a short and exhausted rotation and with the Lakers, all favorites, on the horizon.

As if that were not enough for CP3, a tap on the back (not the noble parts, right?) Of a Russell Westbrook that was completely desnoyed. The head upside down. He shows a lack of confidence because most of the seven losses he committed, the last of them to be considered lost, were due to wanting to pass the ball and the responsibility of not seeing himself with enough strength. He comes out of a complicated injury and it is his second day on the court, he is apologetic while it must be said that his numbers (8/15 in shots for 17 points) do not do justice to the horrendous match signed. The player for whom Daryl Morey traded Paul falls at the moment in which the also president of the NBPA rises like a monument to say something like 'I told you so'. There is a game.

Initially, the attacks were slow. Suppressed hands. On one side, the fear of losing; in the other, the fear of risking and losing. On the local side, Danilo Gallinari was absent at other times in the series. On the Texans side, Harden and more Harden. D'Antoni's strategy of getting Westbrook into breaks at '13' helped try to get him into the tie, but he lacks the pace; he scored so many points because he is very good, but setting an overall bad performance. The Rockets were winning at halftime, but with the fly behind the ear: few points, Oklahoma City had one more gear change.

Harden had to call for help because Gordon, his second sword during these weeks, also failed today. House (12) from the bench and Covington (18 + 5 + 5 + 3) fearsome in both rings brought light to the darkness of Mike D'Antoni, who cut off any approach of the Thunder and warned of the fouls of concentration of their players. And what he saw was fulfilled. First from the hand of Gallinari, then with two consecutive triples by Lu Dort to the delight of many, finally, with Paul the big problem arose. Donovan took a long time to get his star out in the fourth quarter, but just in time. Not only his 28 points (plus 7 rebounds, 3 assists and 3 steals), but the intelligence to achieve it: he sank Jeff Green, the top of the short Rockets, in two consecutive actions for his own to take command, he took one Covington misses thirteen seconds to go and that loss by Westbrook took Gallo to the free kick line to sentence the 104-100 with which this sixth and not final game ended.

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