Local: 503.250.1080
    Toll Free: 866.358.1080
| More
NBA Basketball
Scoreboard|Stats|Standings|Teams|Players|Player News|Injuries|Transactions

Harden and Howard lift Rockets over Blazers

(Photo by Sam Forencich/NBAE via Getty Images)

By JOEL FOWLKS

Associated Press

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) Houston's All-Star tandem of James Harden and Dwight Howard refused to let the Rockets give in to fatigue.

Harden scored 33 points, Howard added 29 points and 13 rebounds, and the Rockets beat the Portland Trail Blazers 116-101 Tuesday night despite playing for the fourth time in five days.

Houston (4-1) bounced back from getting routed by the Clippers 137-118 Monday night in Howard's first trip back to the Staples Center since leaving the Lakers during the summer.

"We got in at 3 a.m. last night," Houston coach Kevin McHale said. "That was a tough one but we got a big win here tonight. James and Dwight had tremendous games."

Damian Lillard scored 22 points and LaMarcus Aldridge added 21 to lead the Blazers, who fell after winning two in a row. Wesley Matthews added 19 points.

Jeremy Lin and reserve Patrick Beverley each had 12 points for the Rockets.

Howard, the seven-time All-Star has teamed up with Harden to give Houston one of the most talented duos in the NBA. Harden, who averaged 25.9 points last season, recovered from a poor shooting performance against the Clippers, hitting 11 of 18 from the field and 9 of 10 from the free throw line

Howard was dominant under the basket as Houston outscored Portland 54-28 in the paint and outrebounded the Blazers 47-30. With center Robin Lopez sitting in foul trouble and his backup Joel Freeland out with a hip injury, the Blazers couldn't defend the rim.

"Dwight makes the whole game so much easier for each teammate," Harden said. "He draws double teams. He's a great passer. He dominates the post and he can score it. He does everything."

The Blazers shot better than 55 percent and had six players score in double figures in a 115-105 victory over San Antonio on Saturday, but shot only 41 percent from the field Tuesday and 65 percent from the line.

"We had a hard time getting shots to fall and when that's going to happen, we've got to do better defensively," Lillard said.

Houston led 55-50 at the half and then went on a 15-2 run to start the second half. The Rockets led by as many as 18 points before Portland started chipping away at the lead, getting to 93-88 on a jumper by Mo Williams. However, Beverley hit a 3-pointer and Harden converted a three-point play to push the lead back to double figures.

"They are a type of team that can put runs on you," Portland coach Terry Stotts said "They put up points quickly."

Portland started the game strong and led 19-10 before the Rockets put together a 19-4 run, with Howard and Harden each contributing eight straight points.

NOTES: Howard will face the Lakers Thursday, when the Rockets host his former team at the Houston Toyota Center. ... Beverley returned after missing three games with a torn muscle in his stomach. ... Lopez finished with no points, six rebounds and five fouls in 18 minutes. ... The teams split the series last season, with each winning one at home and away. However, the Rockets have won five of their last six in Portland.

Updated November 6, 2013

127 © 2014 by STATS LLC and Associated Press.
Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited.

The Fan's Top Stories

Mariota keeps adding to his highlight reel


(AP) Any Heisman Trophy campaign for Marcus Mariota should surely include his touchdown flip. The junior quarterback for the No. 2 Oregon Ducks, already among the favorites for . . . more.

'Cougs treating #2 Ducks like any other foe


(AP) No. 2 Oregon is as high profile as a team gets but Washington State linebacker Cyrus Coen says he sees the high-flying Ducks as just another "faceless opponent." More.

QB Winston benched half for lewd remark


(AP) Jameis Winston has been benched for the first half of Saturday's game against Clemson after making "offensive and vulgar" comments about women and Florida State officials say . . . more.

Former Blazer Hickson suspended 5 games


(AP) Denver Nuggets center/forward J.J. Hickson was suspended for five games without pay by the NBA on Wednesday for violating the terms of the anti-drug program. More.

Vikings 'made mistake,' now bar Peterson


(AP) Hours after reversing course and benching Adrian Peterson indefinitely, Minnesota Vikings owner Zygi Wilf said Wednesday that the team "made a mistake" in bringing back its superstar . . . more.

Nike suspends deal with Adrian Peterson


(AP) Nike has suspended its sponsorship deal with Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson following child abuse allegations. The Beaverton-based shoemaker issued . . . more.

Scott, caddie Williams to part ways


(AP) Adam Scott is looking for a caddie now that he and Steve Williams have decided to end their partnership. Scott said in a statement Wednesday that he and Williams are at different stages of their lives. More.

Woods says strength back, not swing


(AP) Tiger Woods is too busy in the gym to find a new swing coach, or even swing a golf club. Woods said Monday his strength has returned from "busting my butt in the gym pretty hard" and he is on schedule . . . more.

The FAN's NFL Page


Follow your favorite teams and players - for stats, previews, recaps and realtime gamecasts, make The FAN's NFL Page your pro football destination.

The FAN's College Football Page


Ducks, Beavers, Pac-12, you name it! For the latest stories and real time scores, head to The FAN's college football page here.