McHale after loss: 'We try to do too much'
The Houston Rockets just don’t like to make things easy.
For the second straight game, the Rockets squandered a double-figure lead in the fourth quarter and be forced to play extra minutes. This time, though, the Rockets were unable to get the win, losing to the 76ers, 123-117.
The Rockets wasted a fantastic effort on the front-side of a back-to-back for the Rockets, who played without leading scorer James Harden, who sat out with a bruised foot.
Houston set season highs in assists with 34 and in 3-pointers made with 15, led by Jeremy Lin’s nine.
Three of the five Rockets starters posted double-doubles. Lin had 34 points and 12 assists. Dwight Howard finished with 23 points and 15 rebounds and Terrence Jones posted 10 points and 11 rebounds.
After pouring in 31 points, 26 in the second half and overtimes, vs. Toronto on Monday, Jeremy Lin was still cooking, dropping in 16 first-half points. He started the game at shooting guard for James Harden, who was out with a bruised foot. Lin made 4-of-6 3-pointers and had seven assists before halftime.
He didn’t cool off in the second half, making each of his three 3-pointers in the third quarter and finished the game with 34 points on 10-of-19 shooting.
A new age
Rockets head coach Kevin McHale dawned a new age for the Rockets with the non-twin towers look to open the game for the first time this season.
Jones started at the power forward spot, while Howard slid to center. Jones delivered five points (2-of-7 shooting), two rebounds and two blocks in the first half.
The game was over when…
Howard got the ball stolen with 23 seconds left and Evan Turner made a pair of free throws to push the Sixers advantage to three points.
The Rockets' Francisco Garcia fired up an air-ball on the ensuing possession. After a pair of Philadelphia free throws, Lin drained a deep 3-pointer to close within two points. But Thaddeus Young made two free throws and Lin got his last 3-point attempt blocked.
The Rockets will bus to New York for their only trip to Madison Square Garden for Thursday night’s game against the Knicks.
Houston has won 15 of their last 16 games against the Knicks. Their only loss during that stretch was a 104-98 defeat in New York, Jan. 26, 2009. None of the current Knicks were on their active roster that night and only one Rockets player was suited up that night – Aaron Brooks.