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Charlotte at Houston

Harden posts triple-double as Rockets tame Bobcats

CBSSports.com wire reports
  •  

HOUSTON -- James Harden never had a game like this, and he never saw a player hurt the way Charlotte's Michael Kidd-Gilchrist was on Saturday night.

Harden had 21 points, a career-high 11 rebounds and 11 assists for his first career triple-double in the Rockets' 109-95 win over the Bobcats on Saturday night.

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The Rockets broke open a close game in the fourth quarter, after Kidd-Gilchrist collided with teammate Jeff Taylor and left the court on a stretcher. Kidd-Gilchrist, the second overall pick in last year's draft out of Kentucky, was fitted with a neck brace and taken to the hospital for X-rays.

"First time I've ever seen that happen in a game," Harden said. "Definitely praying for him. A sad moment, but we just had try to get back, try to get our rhythm back."

Charlotte coach Mike Dunlap said that Kidd-Gilchrist was moving his extremities and talking as he was wheeled off the floor. Dunlap did not know if Kidd-Gilchrist would remained hospitalized in Houston overnight.

The Rockets led 81-80 early in the fourth when Kidd-Gilchrist was injured. He was trying to block Toney Douglas' driving layup and Taylor came in behind him going for the rebound.

Taylor's right hip connected with the back of Kidd-Gilchrist's head and Taylor came down on top of his teammate. Taylor heard Kidd-Gilchrist talking to the medical personnel, but he didn't speak to Kidd-Gilchrist directly.

"I didn't see anything, it happened so fast," Taylor said.

Chandler Parsons and Patrick Patterson scored 24 points apiece for the Rockets. Patterson hit 10 of 12 shots and scored 14 points in the final quarter to help Houston finally pull away.

"He just caught fire," Houston point guard Jeremy Lin said of Patterson. "We just kind of rode him all the way to victory."

The Bobcats rallied from 15 points down in the third quarter to take a five-point lead in the fourth. But they seemed to lose their momentum after Kidd-Gilchrist went down, and Houston finished with a 26-7 spurt.

"We can throw out any excuse we want," Dunlap said. "We know it's difficult. They're humans and they care about their teammate, but the other team had a stoppage as well."

Kemba Walker scored 24 points and Ramon Sessions had 20 points for Charlotte.

Harden came in averaging 26 points, but only 5.4 assists and 4.4 rebounds, per game. He had four rebounds and four assists in the fourth quarter to reach the unique milestone.

"It means a lot to me, it's my first time ever," Harden said. "I was trying to make shots, trying to rebound, trying to find other ways to impact the game other than scoring."

The Rockets never trailed in the first half, repeatedly beating the Bobcats down the floor for easy baskets.

Charlotte held Harden to four points in the opening quarter and cut the deficit to 32-27 heading to the second.

Parsons swooped in for a putback dunk after Omer Asik missed a free throw early in the second quarter as the Rockets started stretching the lead again. Parsons already had 17 points with eight minutes left in the half, then zipped a cross-court pass to Harden for a layup and a 44-32 Rockets lead.

Houston had 16 assists on 24 first-half field goals and led 62-51 at the break.

Harden scored seven points, including a 3-pointer, in the first five minutes of the third quarter. He also earned a technical foul for mouthing off at a referee over a call, as the Bobcats began turning the tide.

"All the stuff we did really well [in the first half], we couldn't do in the third," Houston coach Kevin McHale said.

The Bobcats cut into the deficit with solid defense, holding the Rockets to only six field goals in the third quarter. Walker sank a 3-pointer and Taylor finished the quarter with a dunk to make it 79-77 heading to the fourth.

The Rockets took control again over the final nine minutes. Patterson sank a pair of 3-pointers and Harden finishing the Bobcats off with a layup and a long jumper.

Notes

  • The Bobcats have lost their last eight games in Houston.
  • Sessions scored at least 20 points for the fourth time in five games.
  • Rockets F Carlos Delfino strained his right elbow in the second quarter and did not return to the game.
  • The Rockets have scored at least 60 points in 18 first halves this season.
  • Asik had 19 points and 15 rebounds for Houston.

.

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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The Rockets' James Harden tallies 21 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists for his first career triple-double. (Getty Images)
The Rockets' James Harden tallies 21 points, 11 rebounds and 11 assists for his first career triple-double. (Getty Images)
Scoreboard
Charlotte (11-35)2724261895
Houston (26-23) «32301730109
CHA:K. Walker 24 Pts
CHA:J. Adrien 7 Reb
CHA:R. Sessions 6 Ast
HOU:C. Parsons 24 Pts
HOU:O. Asik 15 Reb
HOU:J. Harden 11 Ast
Players of the Game
CharlotteHouston

Kemba Walker

James Harden
PtsRebsAstPtsRebsAst
2433211111

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Charlotte
K. Walker, PG4310-232-233424
B. Biyombo, PF320-20-03030
G. Henderson, SG245-85-530315
J. Adrien, SF211-42-27314
M. Kidd-Gilchrist, SF201-52-25024
R. Sessions, PG295-99-1126120
J. Taylor, SG296-81-233315
B. Gordon, SG204-140-023211
B. Haywood, C160-30-06030
T. Thomas, PF71-30-01012
D. Diop, CDid Not Play
H. Warrick, PFDid Not Play
B. Mullens, CDid Not Play
R. Williams, SFDid Not Play
Totals 33-7921-2435182395
 41.8%87.5% 
Houston
C. Parsons, SF449-173-3104224
J. Harden, SG406-118-91111421
O. Asik, C388-133-6151219
J. Lin, PG344-101-12829
P. Patterson, PF2910-122-241424
T. Douglas, PG203-110-03127
M. Morris, PF190-20-02010
C. Aldrich, C102-41-22025
C. Delfino, SG70-20-01100
G. Smith, PFDid Not Play
P. Beverley, PGDid Not Play
D. Motiejunas, PFDid Not Play
J. Anderson, SGDid Not Play
T. Jones, PFDid Not Play
R. White, PFDid Not Play
Totals 42-8218-23502719109
 51.2%78.3% 
Other Games
Chi 93 Final
Atl 76
OKC 110 Final
Cle 115
Sac 81 Final
NY 120
NO 86 Final
Min 115
Orl 98 Final
Mil 107
Wash 86 Final
SA 96
Utah 99 Final
Port 105
Pho 93 Final
GS 113