Third quarter surge pushes Rockets past Lakers

Third quarter surge pushes Rockets past Lakers
January 8, 2014, 9:45 pm
Share This Post

Rockets beat Lakers

(USA Today Sports Images)

With four days off preceding Wednesday night's game against the Lakers, there was a never-ending stream of talk from the Rockets about coming into the game with renewed energy and enthusiasm. It didn't work out that way at all, with Houston falling behind by as many as 11 in the first half. 

But they stormed back in the third quarter and led by as much as 20 points to capture a comfortable, 113-99 win.

James Harden tied his season high with 38 points and it was his third consecutive game of at least 37 points. Dwight Howard added  20 points and 13 rebounds. He also had to endure a couple of minutes of intentional fouls and made 7-of-16 free throws during that stretch. He was 10-of-24 for the game. 

Terrence Jones also had 15 points and 13 rebounds for his ninth double-double of the season.

The game was over when

When the Rockets came out for the third quarter with the type of energy they've been trying to open games with. They quickly took the lead at then extended it to as many as 15 points. Houston outscored Los Angeles 33-15 in the period. 

Highlight of the night

James Harden owned the third quarter once again, his highlight reel play was a drive through the lane and a beautifully floated alley-oop pass to Dwight Howard for a big-time slam, to give the Rockets a 70-65 lead.

Numbers of the night

Houston scored just 52 points on 19-of-47 shooting (40.4 percent) in the first half. Then exploded for 33 points in the third quarter making 13-23 shots (56.5 percent)

Next up

The Rockets will play at the Atlanta Hawks on Friday night looking for the two-game season sweep of the Hawks. Houston beat Atlanta 113-84in November with the Rockets bench piling up a season high 67 points. It was the Rockets largest margin of victory of the season and one of six games the Rockets never trailed.