Rockets News

Houston Rockets: Chris Paul, James Harden lead L.A. Unified to win.

LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 30: Houston Rockets guards Chris Paul (3) talks with James Harden (13) during a Drew League game at King Drew Magnet High School on July 30th, 2017. (Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA - JULY 30: Houston Rockets guards Chris Paul (3) talks with James Harden (13) during a Drew League game at King Drew Magnet High School on July 30th, 2017. (Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
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We get our first look at the James Harden and Chris Paul dynamic duo.

James Harden and Chris Paul gave Rockets fans a glimpse of how the duo will perform during the 2017-18 regular season.

The star guards led L.A. Unified to a 83-81 win over the Home Town Favorites in a packed house at Los Angeles’ highly anticipated Drew League.

It was reported that Russell Westbrook would play for the Home Town Favorites, but other obligations took priority. Jordan Bell, Delon Wright and Tim Hardaway Jr. starred for the Favorites instead.

General Manager Darryl Morey was in attendance. As was Chicago Bulls’ star Dwyane Wade and DeMar DeRozan of the Toronto Raptors.

Paul and Harden shine

James Harden led the way for LAUNFD with 27 points, 12 rebounds, 6 assists and two steals. Paul played facilitator and dished out 10 assists to go along with 13 points.

Paul and Harden started off taking turns handling the ball in each possession, but they seemed to gel as the game went on.

CP3 & Harden with a two-man game. Get used to this Houston pic.twitter.com/fchcPreacn

— Ramona Shelburne (@ramonashelburne) July 31, 2017

The LAUNFD needed to win this game to qualify for the Drew League’s postseason. CP3 showed a bit of rust, making one-of-eight from the field as his team trailed 44-40 at halftime. But Paul came alive in the third quarter, converting on three 3-pointers and crossing over a defender in the process.

https://twitter.com/DrewLeague/status/891913196193304576

L.A. Unified took the lead in the third quarter and held on to close the game. Although it isn’t NBA-level competition, Paul and Harden appeared to have the ability to co-exist. They’ve already practiced together this summer in Los Angeles and Las Vegas. According to Bobby Brown, the team will continue to train in L.A. and then in the Bahamas in August.

James Harden was shaken up when Dorrell Wright stripped the ball from him, hurting Harden’s thumb. He finished the game but it was a nervous moment for everyone watching, including Rockets CEO Tad Brown, per ESPN’s Lawrence Murray.

“It was fun,” Brown said about the game. “It got a little suspect there when James wrecked his thumb. But overall, it was fun.”

James Harden fell to the ground clutching his thumb late in the game Sunday. He finished the game though. Let's see if it affects him Wed

— Ramona Shelburne (@ramonashelburne) July 31, 2017

The L.A. Unified will host Jamal Crawford‘s Seattle Pro-Am league in Los Angeles on Wednesday. After that comes the postseason, of which Harden and Paul are both eligible to play in.

Next: Projecting each Rockets players’ rating in NBA 2K18

Watch the full highlights from the game here.

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