HOUSTON It's never easy. The challenge is ceaseless and moments of elation cannot linger because humility always lurks around the bend.
The Rockets have suffered their share of jarring wake-up calls, and they have been slapped with reminders that surrendering to complacency and fatigue often yields disappointment. They were joyous with what they accomplished in Chicago, Los Angeles, Sacramento and Portland, and human nature led them to ease off the throttle on Wednesday night.
The injury-ravaged Jazz did not offer a surprise. Two games in the loss column separated Utah from the eighth-place Nuggets in the Western Conference playoff picture, so desperation was its traveling companion.
Yet when the Jazz erased an early deficit with an avalanche of transition points, the Rockets waited too late to respond. Their 103-91 loss at Toyota Center did not undo their four-game run of road wins, but the Rockets learned an unmistakable lesson on how desire can never wane.
"We pretty much kn...