Rockets blow another lead in OT loss

Rockets blow another lead in OT loss
November 13, 2013, 10:15 pm
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(USA Today Images)

For the second straight game, the Houston Rockets got a spectacular offensive performance from Jeremy Lin.

For the second straight game, they blew a double-figure fourth quarter lead.

For the second straight game, they allowed the opposition to his a game-tying 3-pointer in the waning seconds.

They could not come up with the win for a second straight game, falling in overtime to the Philadelphia 76ers, 123-117.

The loss drops the Rockets to 5-4 on the season and they get right back to the court Thursday night in New York when they face the Knicks. That will wrap up the Rockets third set of back-to-back games this season, so far they are 1-2 in the first game, and 2-0 in the second game.

Lin poured in 34 points, the second highest total of his career and also added 12 assists, a season high. He made 9-of-15 3-pointers, easily topping his career best of five makes set last season.

The nine 3-pointers also tied the Rockets record for most 3-pointers made in a game. Robert Horry hit nine against at Cleveland against the Cavaliers on Feb. 22, 1996.

“I think everybody works on their shot,” Jeremy Lin said. “I’ve been trying to get better at it. I want to get better at it."

But he, like the rest of the team, had a scoring drought in the fourth quarter. Lin missed his only two shots, both 3-pointers, and did not score in the fourth quarter.

“I wasn’t tired (in the fourth quarter). I was fine. I have to find a way to be more effective out there, especially with the game on the line,” Lin said. "I normally relish the fourth quarter, love the fourth quarter, and I needed to find a way tonight.”

The Rockets had a 10-point lead, their largest of the game, with 9:18 remaining, but were outscored 24-14 the rest of the fourth quarter.

“We get an eight, nine, 10-point lead and we don’t play the same type of basketball,” Rockets head coach Kevin McHale said.

“We started off so badly defensively,” McHale said. “They got everything they wanted so they had some momentum.

“We got some stops, got a little lead a couple times, stretched it out a little bit, but we just couldn’t maintain anything. That has kind of been the story of our year, the whole year.”

It has certainly been the story in the last two contests. They had a 12-point lead against Toronto on Monday night with under seven minutes remaining, but ended up in overtime, too.

On both nights, the Rockets were mere seconds away from putting the game away but allowed game-tying 3-pointers in both instances. On Monday, Toronto’s Rudy Gay hit a 3-pointer with less than one second remaining with Chandler Parsons draped all over him to force a second overtime.

On Wednesday, it was former Rocket James Anderson’s turn for the theatrics. Anderson pumped in a career high 36 points and he nailed the game-tying 3-pointer with 6.6 seconds remaining and Jeremy Lin draped all over him.

“I’ve got to go back and watch, but I was pretty sure I was all over him,” Lin said. “Rudy Gay hit one last game, James Anderson hit one this game. Sometime you just have to tip your hat off to them.

“But at the same time, we shouldn’t have been in that position in the first place.”