NBA Report Cards: Celtics pass with flying colors; Warriors lack an identity

Handing out NBA regular season report cards as we flip the page to the start of the NBA Playoffs.
Utah Jazz v Golden State Warriors
Utah Jazz v Golden State Warriors / Thearon W. Henderson/GettyImages
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Houston Rockets

Regular season grade: D

Looking back to last offseason, the Houston Rockets had emerged as one of the more aggressive teams in the league. They made two big splash moves during free agency in acquiring both Fred VanVleet and Dillon Brooks. They also added Jeff Green as a supporting veteran. At that point, it was clear that the Rockets wanted to make the pivot toward a win-now team and attempt to compete for a playoff spot in the Western Conference. Heading into this season, the expectation for this team was, at the very least, to finish as a Play-In Tournament team.

The Rockets failed on that front. Even though they got off to a fairly positive start to the season, the Rockets quickly faded by mid-season and it wasn't until late in the year that they began to make another strong push that ultimately fell short. Looking back at this season, it's going to be incredibly difficult to not chalk up this year as a failure for the Rockets.

The true test for this team comes in the offseason. The Rockets are stuck after making the decision to go all-in on becoming a win-now team. They have to double down heading into the summer.