Thursday, April 17, 2014
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Harden scores 34 as Rockets beat Warriors, 105-83

HOUSTON — James Harden scored 34 points, Dwight Howard had 22 points and 18 rebounds, and the Houston Rockets beat the Golden State Warriors 105-83 Friday night.

Terrence Jones added 16 points and 10 rebounds for the Rockets, who had lost two straight. Harden shot 13 for 22 from the field and 7 for 9 on free throws two nights after shooting 3 for 17 — including 0 for 10 on 3-pointers — against Phoenix.

Howard was 12 for 20 on free throws as the Rockets finished 25 for 39 from the line. Houston was also 45 percent from the field.

Stephen Curry led the Warriors with 22 points and five assists, but was just 5 of 14 from the field while making all 11 free-throw attempts. Harrison Barnes had 14 points and seven rebounds, and Kent Bazemore added 12 and David Lee 11 points as the Warriors saw their two-game win streak end.

Golden State shot 36 percent from the field, including 2 for 16 on 3s.

The Rockets led 61-37 at halftime and pushed the advantage to 28 on Harden’s three-point play less than 2 minutes into the third quarter.

Golden State pulled to 74-50 on Jermaine O’Neal’s jumper midway through the third, and the Warriors resorted to ‘Hack a Howard’ with 5:40 remaining in the period.

Howard made 2 of 4 from the line, and the Warriors pulled to 76-54 on O’Neal’s layup with 5:06 to go in the quarter. Howard connected on the next two free throws, the Warriors went away from hacking Howard.

Golden State got no closer than 15 points the rest of the way.

Houston opened up a 31-12 lead after the first quarter on 60-percent shooting from the field.

The Rockets hit nine of their first 11 field goals as Jones led the way with 11 points in the quarter and Howard had nine.

Golden State opened the second with five straight points to pull within 14 on Curry’s 3, but the Rockets responded with a 16-6 spurt over a 5-minute stretch to open up a 55-30 lead on Patrick Beverley’s layup with 1:30 to go in the half. Harden had eight points in the run.

The Warriors shot 27 percent from the field and hit 1 of 8 from beyond the arc in the first half.

NOTES: Houston forward Chandler Parsons returned after missing the last two games with back spasms. Parsons finished with eight points and five assists on 3-of-13 shooting in 33 minutes. … The Warriors’ 12 first quarter points tied a season low for a quarter and was the Warriors’ fewest points in a first quarter. … The 12 first-quarter points was also a season-low for points in a quarter allowed by the Rockets.

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

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