Dwight Howard: Have to 'go to work'

Dwight Howard

After losing on his home court in Game 1, Dwight Howard has a thought as to how the Houston Rockets can turn the tables on LaMarcus Aldridge and the Portland Trail Blazers in their opening-round playoff series.

"We have to play inside out, play their bigs and make it a long night for those guys," Howard told the Houston Chronicle on Tuesday. "I have to demand the ball, get it and go to work."

Howard scored 27 points on 9-of-21 shooting and had 15 rebounds in the Rockets' 122-120 overtime loss to the Blazers on Sunday night. Game 2 is Wednesday.

He figures his increased post presence could also be used to tire Aldridge, who torched the Rockets for a career-high 46 points -- including 16 on post-up plays. Aldridge, who added 18 rebounds, was mostly guarded by Terrence Jones on Sunday night.

"We have to go right back at him," Howard told the Chronicle. "You have to make him play defense and make him use his energy on defense. Make him have to run around and guard."

The Rockets, who led by 13 points with 10 minutes remaining, are on board with Howard's thought process but still want to use an up-tempo attack led by James Harden, who scored 27 points on 8-of-28 shooting -- including 3-of-14 from 3-point range -- in Game 2.

"We have to dump the ball down for him," Rockets forward Chandler Parsons said of Howard. "He has to make plays. He's had a lot of success against [Robin] Lopez. We have to keep feeding him the ball. That doesn't mean we have to slow down. We want to get out in transition and run."

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