Howard out at least four more weeks

HANG TIME NEW JERSEY — The Houston Rockets updated the status of Dwight Howard on Wednesday.

This morning Dr. Walt Lowe of the Memorial Hermann Sports Medicine Institute conducted a bone marrow aspirate injection on Rockets center Dwight Howard’s right knee. Howard will begin rehabilitation immediately and will be re-evaluated in approximately four weeks.

Houston sits in third place in the Western Conference, but is tied in the win column with the sixth-place Dallas Mavericks. The Rockets are 12-5 without Howard (if you include his last game, in which he played less than nine minutes), but have outscored their opponents by just 1.3 points per 100 possessions with him off the floor.

That’s a point differential that suggests they should have gone 9-8 in those 17 games. Twelve of the 17 have been within five points in the last five minutes, and Houston has gone 8-4 in clutch situations without their center.

Now they’re now about to begin a rough stretch of schedule. From Feb. 4 to March 4 (four weeks), Houston will play 11 of its 13 games against teams currently over .500. Seven games in the loss column ahead of ninth-place New Orleans, they’re probably not in any danger of losing a playoff spot, but they can probably say goodbye to home-court advantage in the first round.

Donatas Motiejunas has filled in admirably for Howard, and the additions of Josh Smith and a healthy Terrence Jones give the Rockets more frontline depth than they had earlier in the season. But the Rockets’ margin for error from game to game will be pretty thin for the next four weeks, because there’s no replacing the impact that Howard makes on both ends of the floor.

6 Comments

  1. Hiep says:

    I miss the old big Dwight before he got very serious back injury and then knee as well. 2 surgeries and did not have enough time to recover put him down …. “big thanks” to Kobe too, not only forced Dwight too much but also Pau.

  2. Indiana'sownLarryBird says:

    The end of Lebron’s career????? What Lebron is the best in the world and the way he’s playing he’s going to win the MVP, Now Howard he’s been done since he left Orlando..

  3. Trucestiles says:

    Both Howard and LBJ are in the tail of their prime due to injuries. By the end of next year, Howard will be the 6th best center at best, Lebron may fall to #3 in the league behind Davis and Durant. They both will enter the tail end of their careers by the start of the 2017 season. 😦

  4. Johanson says:

    Motiejunas is anyway better option for Houston, shouldn’t be any problem without Dwight.

  5. harriethehawk says:

    This isn’t good. But there’s one shining light; they are better off than OKC at this point…

  6. ImMe says:

    Howard been getting injured quite a bit now.. I think he hasn’t been a 100% since his Magic days..