The Rockets had a few rocky minutes against the Nets. Houston made just one of its first six shots, and New Jersey took an early lead.
The Rockets, however, never seemed to notice.
If nothing else, they have built an offense they fully expect to be there every night.
They rolled as they have been, scoring 112 points despite some stretches in cruise control. They have averaged 109.3 points in their past 17 games to move past the Knicks into second in the NBA in scoring.
"We're happy, we're having fun and we're just going out there and we're flowing," Kyle Lowry said. "We know who is going to get the ball, how we're going to score and how we want to play. We're confident. We're getting something going.
"We just play. We're playing good basketball. Everybody knows their role. Everybody knows the situation we're going to be in. We're just trying to get as many wins as we can. We're trying to make a push."
The Rockets have topped 100 in 18 of their past 22 games. They lead the NBA in assist-to-turnover ratio and are fourth in assists.
"We are playing well," Luis Scola said. "It's been about a month that we have played well. We are winning games. We are solid. We are focused."
Kevin Martin put it more succinctly.
"Our offense," he said, "is pretty darn good."
ROCKETS 112, NETS 87: The Rockets' record is greatly improved, as far above .500 as it has been all season. The turnaround has been enough to put them in the playoff chase and keep things interesting down the stretch. But with their rout of the Nets on Tuesday, they accomplished something they had not in their run. They did not play especially well, at least by the standards of their recent wins, or even their loss in Miami on Sunday, and they still won easily. They led by 26 in the third quarter and gave most of the starters most of the fourth quarter off. They scored easily to win their 13th game in 17, and their eighth straight in New Jersey to keep their playoff hopes alive heading into a tougher test in Philadelphia on Wednesday.
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