“When I hoop, I have no friends" ~ Westbrook.
Houston’s James Harden sat comfortably at the top of the leader board with 40 points, three rebounds and seven assists as Westbrook fell one assist short of a triple-double. The new acquisition matched former teammate Steven Adams for a game high 12 rebounds, whilst his nine assists remained unchallenged.
With a 10-point margin in OKC’s favour at half time, the Rockets opened the third with a 17-4 run to flip the deficit at 69-66 with around seven minutes remaining in the quarter. PJ Tucker hit a three for Houston and Westbrook closed the run with a dunk before flexing at the opposition bench, the Rockets snatched an 11-point lead with a 39-point third quarter.
After a three by Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Thunder sat on a minor point deficit of three with 19 seconds on the clock. The 21-year-old point guard led OKC’s points at 22, along with nine rebounds and four assists, making his mark already this season. A foul on Westbrook shortly after saw him make 1 of 2 free throws before fouling Nerlens Noel, who made both of his.
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But it was Harden who put the final nail in the coffin, making four of his 21 free throws to settle the score at 116-112 to Houston. The Rockets’ are confident that their Westbrook/Harden duo sparks their first chance at a title win since 1995.
Warriors 134, Pelicans 123
With two losses to start the season, Golden State had been well and truly buried in the eyes of NBA fans. But. They just exploded. Dominating by as many as 29 points against the New Orleans Pelicans, the Warriors shut down spectator scepticism to claim a 134-123 victory.
The second night of a back-to-back on the road, after a 120-92 defeat at Oklahoma City, the Warriors got to work to dispel concerns about their place in this season’s playoffs. Led by two-time MVP, Steph Curry, who was supported by his two Allstars D’Angelo Russel and Draymond Green (who pulled back Sunday’s dire shooting), the tables began turning.
Curry hit 26 points and 11 assists, D’Angelo Russell took a while to warm up but still threw up 24, and Draymond Green put up his first triple-double of the season; ending with 16 points, 17 rebounds, and 10 assists.
The Warriors’ younger players on the roster finally stepped up, as projected by Head Coach Steve Kerr last week, with rookie Jordan Poole starting hot with 13 points on 3-of-5 shooting from deep.
Shooting guard Damion Lee came off the bench running, with 23 points and 11 rebounds in 28 minutes of game time.
The Pelicans nursed their worst loss of the season, dropping to 0-4. Although Brandon Ingram top-scored for New Orleans with 27 points, adding an impressive 10 rebounds and six assists, it may be too late for a turnaround.
Clippers 111, Hornets 96
Clippers and allowed a 7-4 Hornets run to obliterate their early 14-point lead, although sharpshooter Landry Shamet did fire off four first-quarter three-pointers. Shamet finished with 16 points, all scored in the first half, four rebounds and two assists.
The Hornets, coming off the back of a loss to the Lakers the night before, were within a point of the lead, but that’s when the game changed. Three-time Allstar, Leonard, cooked up a storm with 30 points and six assists, leading a seamless offence and frighteningly good defence. The Clippers allowed only 42 points after halftime.
LA Center Ivica Zubac achieved a career-high five blocks, scoring seven points and grabbing six rebounds as the Clippers outscored Charlotte by 21 when he was on the floor. Reserve Lou Williams had 23 points and four assists along with four rebounds as Harrell racked up 19 points and seven rebounds.
There is still a mass of work to be done with the Clippers as a lack first-quarter defence left Charlotte open for countless threes whilst 21 turnovers allowed 33 Hornets points.
Terry Rozier scored a team-high 17 points for Charlotte.
Raptors 104, Magic 95
Pistons 96, Pacers 94
Bucks 129, Cavaliers 112
76ers 105, Hawks 103
Spurs 113, Trail Blazers 110
Nuggets 101, Kings 94
Jazz 96, Suns 95News Now - Sport News