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ICYMT: James Harden and His Historic Triple-Double

Dec 31, 2016; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Rockets guard James Harden (13) pushes the ball upcourt while New York Knicks forward Lance Thomas (42) pursues during the second quarter at Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Erik Williams-USA TODAY Sports
Dec 31, 2016; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Rockets guard James Harden (13) pushes the ball upcourt while New York Knicks forward Lance Thomas (42) pursues during the second quarter at Toyota Center. Mandatory Credit: Erik Williams-USA TODAY Sports
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In the Houston Rockets 129-122 victory over the New York Knicks, James Harden put up numbers that the NBA has never seen before in history.

A year ago today, the Houston Rockets lost an embarrassing game to the Golden State Warriors, making it clear there was a problem in Houston.

At 16-17, not only were the Rockets falling short of their preseason expectations, but James Harden was the poster child for Houston’s problems. So much so, I pondered if Harden was an enigma as the Rockets entered into 2016.

Fast forward 365 days later, Harden has gone from an enigma to the frontrunner for league MVP honors. In the Rockets 129-122 victory over the New York Knicks, Harden posted one of the greatest triple-doubles in league history. The Beard posted an astonishing 53 points, 16 rebounds, and 17 assists in Saturday night’s win.

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Not only did Harden put up a mind-blowing stat line, but did so on 14-of-26 shooting from the field. Which ties Celtics Isaiah Thomas for the fewest shots in a 50-point game this season, and fourth-least in league history.

Not only was his shooting performance remarkable, but no player in the history of the NBA has ever put up a line of 50-15-15.

Although many want to crown Russell Westbrook the presumptive MVP, this performance by Harden may have changed the race. Certainly, Westbrook is worthy of the honor halfway through the season, but the race is far from over.

After this historic performance by The Beard, James Harden may very well be closer to his first MVP award than Westbrook.

Next: Why can’t Ryan Anderson make shots in the Toyota Center?

Enjoy the season Red Nation and a very happy new year! Be sure to stay connected with Space City Scoop as our amazing team of writers keep you on top of all things Houston Rockets.

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