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Houston at Orlando

Venue: Amway Center
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The Houston Rockets are looking to put a couple of disappointing losses behind them.

Doing so, however, could prove more difficult than usual with their star-studded backcourt banged up.

James Harden and Jeremy Lin are considered game-time decisions for Friday night's road matchup against the woeful Orlando Magic.

The Rockets (31-28) blew 17-point leads in each of their last two games, falling 105-103 at Washington on Saturday and 110-107 to Milwaukee on Wednesday.

Harden scored 25 points and Omer Asik had 16 and a career-high 22 rebounds against the Bucks, who won on Monta Ellis' 3-pointer as time expired.

"It was a bad loss," said Chandler Parsons, who added 20 points. "There is no way around it. There is no way we should have lost that game. These are the ones you look back on and these are the ones that cost you so you can't do nothing else now. It is what it is so hopefully we learn as a team and get better from it."

Wednesday's defeat may have also come at a cost. Harden played with a wrap on his left knee after bumping into Ellis in the first half, and Lin twisted an ankle. The Rockets, who continue to cling to the eighth and final playoff berth in the Western Conference, held both players out of Thursday's practice.

"If we took care of business, we could be the seventh or sixth seed right now, and we're not," said Lin, averaging 8.0 points on 32.3 percent shooting over the last three games. "So that really hurts, and we can't expect that other teams are going to give us a chance to climb up the rankings, we have to go do it ourselves."

The Rockets are one-half game behind seventh-place Utah and just a few in front of the ninth-place Los Angeles Lakers.

"We need to focus on the Magic on Friday night," Parsons said. "We can't look ahead, we can't keep looking at the standings. Who cares about the Lakers?

"We control our own destiny right now. So I don't really care what they're doing or who they play as long as we focus on who we're playing."

While Houston has been outscored by an average of 14.2 points during a five-game skid versus Orlando (16-42), these teams haven't met since Dec. 26, 2011.

The Magic, who've gone an NBA-worst 4-29 since Dec. 21, followed Tuesday's 98-84 win at Philadelphia with a 125-101 loss to Sacramento on Wednesday. The Kings shot 54.8 percent and outscored Orlando 56-44 in the paint and 25-8 in transition.

Tobias Harris had a career-high 23 points off the bench while fellow newcomer Beno Udrih posted 14 and eight assists. Both players were acquired from Milwaukee in the J.J. Redick trade.

"Maybe we played hard, but they played harder," Udrih told the team's official website. "We have a lot of talent and potential but we have to bring it every night.

"I put all of my stats on the side when the team losses. I'd rather have zero, zero and zero and the team wins. So hopefully the next game we can be aggressive, play harder on defense and the offense will come."

Harris, averaging 5.4 points over 73 career games, has scored 17.7 on 67.7 percent shooting in three contests with Orlando while wearing No. 12.

"I know that was Dwight Howard's old number, but that's the number that I chose," Harris said. "I know there are a lot of expectations with that number and I'm happy to take on those expectations."

Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Game Odds
AwayLineHomeLine
Houston -8.5 Orlando 8.5
Standings
TeamStandingsWLPct.GBL 10Strk
Houston2nd Southwest 5428.65985-5Lost 1
Orlando5th Southeast 2359.280313-7Lost 4

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Injuries
Houston
PlayerInjury
No injuries reported.
Orlando
PlayerInjury
No injuries reported.
 
Key Players
James<br>Harden
James
Harden
, SG
38.5 Min. Per Game 35.1 Jameer<br>Nelson
Jameer
Nelson
, PG
26.4 Pts. Per Game 14.5
5.7 Ast. Per Game 7.4
4.8 Reb. Per Game 3.8
45.4 Field Goal % 39.4
36.1 Three Point % 34.5
85.4 Free Throw % 90.1
 
Team Rankings
TeamRankPoints
Houston Rockets1086.62
Orlando Magic2571.31
 
Series Game Log
DateLocationResults
Nov 22Orlando 
Dec 29 @ Miami 
Feb 25Orlando 
Apr 13 @ Miami 
 
Other Games
NY 96 Final
Wash 88
Ind 93 Final
Tor 81
GS 86 Final
Bos 94
LAC 105 Final
Cle 89
Mem 91 Final
Mia 98
Det 95 Final
NO 100
Dal 98 Final
Brook 90
Sac 102 Final
SA 130
Atl 87 Final
Pho 92
Char 68 Final
Utah 98
OKC 103 Final
Den 105