The Houston Rockets were without James Harden against the San Antonio Spurs, but played tremendous defense in the second half leading to a 97-90 win.
This is the first time the Rockets have beaten the Spurs three times in a season since the the 97′-98′ season. In the first half the Rockets appeared sluggish, while the Spurs could not miss. Houston scored a total 39 points in the first half, but put up 33 points in the third quarter which also featured Hack-A-Howard. Dwight Howard struggled in the first half, but thanks in large part to the Smite-A-Dwight he was able to get the offense going finishing with 23 points, and 16 boards. Howard was 13-25 from the free throw line, as the entire team(aside from Jeremy Lin) shot poorly from the charity stripe. 26-47 – 55%.
Jeremy Lin got the start because of the injured thumb of James Harden and he did not disappoint, making all 7 of his free throws, and knocking down clutch baskets during a 17-2 run the Rockets put to ether over the final 2 minutes of the game. Lin finished with 18 points and 8 dimes.
The Space City Scoop front-runner for the Most Improved Player award, Terrence Jones was one rebound away from a double-double finishing with 21 points and 9 boards.
Huge stat was the Rockets out rebounding the Spurs 55 to 39.
With a loss to Houston tonight, Spurs are now 1-11 vs teams in the top 7 in win percentage this season. They’re 32-1 vs. all other teams. The Rockets have now won 4 straight against the division, and I-10 rival.
Up next for the Rockets is a trip up I-45 to face the Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday night.