Instant replay: Rockets cool off red-hot Trail Blazers

Instant replay: Rockets cool off red-hot Trail Blazers
January 20, 2014, 9:30 pm
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(Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports)

The Rockets nearly matched their season high 73 points in the first half against Oklahoma City from Thursday night by scoring 71 points on Monday night against the Blazers. But unlike Thursday night, the Rockets offense was plenty good enough in the second half to maintain their advantage and beat the Blazers, 126-113.

Chandler Parsons was magnificent with 31 points on 12-of-19 shooting and had 10 rebounds and seven assists. Pat Beverley returned to the starting lineup after missing the last 14 games with a broken hand and scored 17 points. He was a (+26) for the game, best for any player in this game.

Houston also got 24 points and 12 rebounds from Dwight Howard and 22 points from James Harden and led this game for the final 47 minutes and 19 seconds.

The game was over when...

The Rockets withstood the only serious run the Blazers put together in the second half. The Blazers trimmed the Rockets lead to six points at 86-80 with 5:06 remaining, but Houston scored the next seven points and the Blazers never got the deficit under ten points the rest of the game.

Highlight of the night

With the Rockets continuing to hold off every Portland challenge, Harden floated a beautiful alley-oop to Howard who slammed it through to give him 24 points and put the Rockets comfortably ahead, 119-104 with 5:09 remaining.

Numbers of the night

Houston topped 70 points in a half for the second time this season and second time in three games. They scored 71 in the first half against Portland and led by 15 points. On Thursday, Houston scored 73 points and led Oklahoma City by 14 points. They would score only 19 points in the second half versus Oklahoma City, before losing 104-92. Their 55-point second half on Monday night was more than enough to beat Portland.

Next up

The Rockets' longest home stand of the season continues with a game Wednesday night against Sacramento. While this will be the third game against the Kings this year, the Rockets are still looking for their first win against Sacramento. The Kings beat the Rockets in Sacramento 106-91 on Dec. 15 and then again in Houston on New Year’s Eve, 110-106. Houston led that last matchup 86-80 after three quarters. That’s one of just three games they’ve lost this season when leading after three quarters (22-3).