Lakers oust Rockets: James Harden has flaws, but trading for Russell Westbrook is what closed Houston’s window

The Houston Rockets were eliminated from the 2020 NBA playoffs on Saturday, as the Los Angeles Lakers completed a gentleman’s sweep with a 119-96 victory in Game 5. On its face, it’s not a surprising result. The Rockets were a No. 4 seed. They needed seven games to squeak past the Thunder in the first round. The Lakers are a No. 1 seed. They have, irrefutably, two of the top three players still alive in the playoffs. They’re a bigger and better team than Houston. 

But somewhere along the line we attached inflated expectations to the Rockets, in part because they have James Harden, in part because it’s been burned into our heads that their mathematic approach to basketball somehow makes them less beholden to the actual talent on their roster, and also because we all still remember them coming this close to knocking off the Kevin Durant-Steph Curry Warriors

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Closed schools have to serve some special education students in person, experts say

Out of all the students struggling with distance learning, students with disabilities need in-person services the most, some San Diego parents and advocates say.

Many special education services — such as hands-on occupational therapy or a one-on-one aide — can’t be replicated well online, parents say. Some are reporting that their children simply aren’t learning and that Zoom is too distracting and impersonal.

Meg Menard, a Tierrasanta mom of a 6-year-old boy with autism who attends Elevate Elementary charter school, said she sits with her son throughout his Zoom classes and reminds him to sit up and pay attention every few seconds. At the same time, she takes care of her three other children and works on a master’s degree.

“He doesn’t want to pay attention to Zoom,” she said of her son. “He doesn’t want to sit down and stare at his iPad…. I have to keep telling him

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