Houston Rockets general manager Daryl Morey said his team can win the NBA title this year despite having several players injured.
Starting point guard Patrick Beverley has a wrist injury and could be out for the season, forward Terrence Jones is dealing with a lung issue and center Dwight Howard recently missed a 26-game stretch after experiencing swelling in his right knee.
"We think we can win the title with or without Beverley," Morey said, according to ESPN.com. "Obviously it gets more challenging without Beverley; he's the key to our ability to guard a lot of these very good point guards in the West."
Houston (50-23) has a half-game lead over the Memphis Grizzlies for second place in the Western Conference with nine games remaining in the regular season.
Morey says he understands that the Golden State Warriors are the favorites in the West.
“I think the Golden State training staff hasn't been talked about enough this year. That team has been healthy and really that showcased everyone in Golden State,” Morey said. “Coach [Steve] Kerr has done a great job. We won't go in as the favorite. We do feel like we can beat anybody in a seven-game series, and we're pretty excited to get going with the playoffs."
Houston has lost all four regular season games against the Warriors this season and has been beaten in the first round of the playoffs in each of the last two seasons.
- Scooby Axson