Harden, Rockets beat Bobcats to snap 7-game skid
Posted at: 01/21/2013 6:37 PM
By STEVE REED
(AP) CHARLOTTE, N.C. - James Harden scored 29 points and hit all 10 of his free throws in the fourth quarter as the Houston Rockets rallied to snap a seven-game losing streak, beating the Charlotte Bobcats 100-94 Monday.
Kemba Walker scored a career-high 35 points for the Bobcats, who set a franchise record with their 15th straight loss at home. The longest home skid in NBA history is 19 straight by Dallas during the 1993-94 season.
Harden made just 5 of 20 shots, but went 19 of 21 on free throws. He was perfect from the line when the Rockets overcame a seven-point deficit in the final period.
Marcus Morris had 21 points for the Rockets. Carlos Delfino scored 16, including a 3-pointer from the right corner that put Houston ahead for good at 96-94 with 1:54 left.
Harden has led the Rockets in scoring in 22 of the last 23 games. He also finished with seven assists and seven rebounds.
Houston couldn’t find a flow on offense early and fell behind by 12 against the typically slow-starting Bobcats.
Harden was just 2 of 9 from the field in the first half and missed several easy shots, including a pair of driving layups. He also had three turnovers, including one where he inexplicably lost control of his dribble with no defender near him. He twice had his shot blocked.
Harden’s shaky first half ended when his heave from half-court as time expired sailed about 10 feet wide of the backboard.
Walker went 6 of 7 on 3s. He made all three tries in the first half, helping the Bobcats take a 56-45 lead at the break.
Charlotte got it done on the defensive end, blocking six shots _ four by center Bismack Biyombo. He wound up with seven blocks, four against Harden.
Walker made 3-pointers on back-to-back possessions that gave the Bobcats an 81-74 lead entering the fourth quarter.
But as has been the problem most of the season, Charlotte had trouble closing out an opponent, shooting just 4 of 19 in the fourth quarter and scoring just 13 points.
While the Bobcats struggled to knock down jumpers, Harden took the ball to the rim and drew fouls. He scored 12 points in the fourth quarter, all but two from the line.
Ramon Sessions had 19 points for the Bobcats and Hakim Warrick chipped in with 10.
(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)