Houston Rockets: 3 takeaways from Christmas win over Thunder

Photo by Jeff Haynes/Getty Images
Photo by Jeff Haynes/Getty Images /
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Photo by Jeff Haynes/Getty Images
Photo by Jeff Haynes/Getty Images /

3. Clint Capela continues to be a force on the glass

Just three days removed from putting together a 21-point, 23 rebound stat line in a 108-101 win against the San Antonio Spurs, Clint Capela worked to show that his recent performance was no fluke under the bright lights, picking up right where he left off.

In a matchup where the Rockets went up against the second-best rebounding team in the league, Capela crashed the glass in a manner that would have made the late Moses Malone proud, hauling down 23 rebounds in the second straight game. He became the first Rockets player since Charles Barkley to garner at least 20 rebounds or more in back-to-back outings.

"“I think it’s a mindset,” Capela told Jonathan Feigen of the Houston Chronicle when asked about his work on the glass following the game. “My body’s been feeling good….before the game I am in the weight room…doing some extra stuff so my body will feel better. “I knew from the last time that we played them and every time we played this team, it’s all about rebounding. I had to make a statement as a center on this team…to make sure that we are going to win the rebounding battle.”"

Although the Swiss Roll managed to produce yet another double-double outing, it was his effort on the boards that managed to stand out, as his body of work inside played a larger role on the final outcome of the contest than most fans might have imagined.

Houston — which currently ranks dead last among all NBA teams in defensive rebounding — held the top offensive rebounding team in Oklahoma City to just nine second chance points, while also winning the official battle in the process. The Rockets finished the game with a +2 advantage on the boards in large part to the effort of their fifth-year center, who refused to be denied from seizing his territory in a game that demanded it.