3. March 18th, 2018 vs. Minnesota Timberwolves
Prior to the start of the 2017-18 season, the Rockets went out and made a splash move, as general manager Daryl Morey traded for Chris Paul. This prompted many in the national media to question how CP3 and James Harden were going to co-exist.
The Rockets had the best record in the league leading up to their March 18th game against the Minnesota Timberwolves, who also made a franchise-saving move to bring in Jimmy Butler. This game the Wolves a trio of Butler, Karl Anthony-Towns, and Andrew Wiggins, not to mention having former Houston Rockets assistant Tom Thibodeau running the show.
The Wolves were 40-31 heading into their showdown with the Rockets, who were 56-14, which gave a glimpse of a future playoff series. During that game, Harden had game highs in points and assists, as he had 34 points and 12 assists.
This marked Harden’s 20th double-double of the season match that point, and he led the Rockets to a 129-120 victory. Harden only needed 18 shots to get 34 points, which is impressive considering how he struggled from the 3-point line.
During that game, Harden went 2-of-9 from long-range, but he went a perfect 14-of-14 from the charity stripe. Harden had a true shooting percentage of 70.4 percent, and added two steals and a block as well.
Harden scored nine of the Rockets’ final 11 points, and helped the Rockets pull apart from Minnesota.
Next: No. 2