Magic fourth quarter comeback falls short against the Rockets
The Rockets had a 22-point lead entering the fourth quarter, but in classic Rockets fashion, the Rockets let their opponents creep back into the game in the fourth quarter. The Magic cut the lead in half in the fourth, but never brought it within single digits.
Tonight’s game was all about the Rocket’s superstars. On Dwight Howard‘s 28th birthday, Howard finished with 20 points, 21 rebounds, and 3 blocks, and even was 8-12 from the charity stripe. James Harden finished with 27 points, 8 rebounds, and 10 assists, and has been noticeably more effective on defense in the last two games.
It looked like the Rockets may be playing down to the Magic early, as the Magic led 9-2 early in the first quarter. The Rockets took an early timeout to settle down and it paid off. The Rockets went on a 17-3 run afterwards, and went on to hit 7 three-pointers in the quarter to put the Rockets up 12 after the first quarter.
The second quarter wasn’t much different as the Rockets continued to play tough defense. The Rockets held the Magic to just 27.7% shooting in the half, good for a measly 38 points. With Nikola Vucevic out, the Rockets also out rebounded the Magic, 33 to 18 in the first half. The Rockets were looking sharp, but look to still have some turnover problems, and had 11 in the first half alone.
Terrence Jones had another great game following a few stinkers last week. Jones finished 16 points, 13 rebounds, and 5 blocks, and was a big part of the Rockets third quarter run. The Rockets look better with Chandler Parsons on the court, and he finished with 18 points.
The Rockets now have three whole days off before the go on a west-coast road trip. The Rockets will face the Portland Trail Blazers on Thursday night. Tipoff is scheduled for 9:30 PM and the game can be seen on CSN Houston and TNT.