Houston (USA), Jan. 31 (EFE) .- The harrowing touch returned in part to the wrist of guard James Harden who contributed 35 points as leader of the Houston Rockets attack that was imposed 128-121 to the Dallas Mavericks, in the duel for the leadership of the Southwest Division.
Harden scored 10 of 25 field shots, including 6 of 14 from outside the perimeter, and returned to be the top scorer of the Rockets, in addition to providing a double-double when capturing 16 rebounds -14 defensive-, distributed six assists and recovered Four balls
While the base Russell Westbrook also made his contribution felt by staying at the doors of a double-double with 32 points, nine assists, six rebounds and three ball recoveries of the 11 that had the Rockets for only six losses.RELATED
The good ball control helped them overcome the absence of the starting pivot, the Swiss Clint Capela, suffers bruise on the heel of the right foot, and that left the Rockets without their best man in the inside game.
That was noted with the dominance that the Mavericks had within the area by capturing 52 rebounds for just 37 of the Rockets, who are now the lonely leaders in the Southwest Division with a 30-18 mark.
While the Mavericks (29-19), although they overcame a disadvantage of 18 points to get into the game in the final stretch of the fourth period, it was not enough before Harden’s inspiration with two decisive triples.
Escort Eric Gordon reached 17 points, forward Danuel House Jr. scored another 14 as the other two Rockets headlines that got double-digit numbers.
Escort-forward Ben McLemore, who left reserve, finished as a sixth Rockets player with 13 points, including 3 of 6 triples.
Houston scored at least 100 points in three quarters for the fifth time this season and improved to 34-0 when the team scored 100 points before the last quarter under the direction of coach Mike D’Antoni.
The Rockets, who reached the fourth period with an advantage of 16 points, saw how the Mavericks, despite the absence of their star, the Slovenian base Luka Doncic, aggravated the discomfort that dragged his right ankle so he could not travel with the team, they fought with the best inspiration of the Latvian center Kristaps Porzingis, who finished with a double-double of 35 points and 12 rebounds.
Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle acknowledged that Doncic needed to rest and at least he could miss the next six games with the team, but he could be ready before the All-Star Game arrives in which he will start the Western Conference.
Together with Porzingis, who completed his best game so far this season, five other Mavericks players had double-digit numbers, including the bases, the Seth Curry reserve, which contributed 16 points, and the holder, the Puerto Rican Juan José Barea who arrived at 11.
Barea played 21 minutes and scored 4 of 10 field shots, failed an attempt to triple and hit 3-3 from the personnel line, in addition to distributing nine assists – team leader in that facet of the game – and capturing five rebounds.
The Puerto Rican international base, in the first part, and Curry in the fourth period, were key to keeping the Mavericks in the game and in the last five minutes of regulation time also have the opportunity to fight for victory.
The base Austin Rivers made a triple that allowed the Rockets to get a partial of 113-106, while Harden stole the ball from Porzingis and scored basket with penetration and tray.
The Mavericks did not give up and twice under the disadvantage to four, the last one with 90 seconds left, forward-guard Tim Hardaway Jr. made a triple and committed a personal foul and a play of four goals.
Harden responded with a triple that assured the leadership of the Rockets and also the victory they needed so much against the direct rival division team, which confirmed that despite the absence of their star Doncic, they are already a winning team.