Two games had center stage on Thursday night as the Houston Rockets traveled to Miami to play the Heat and the Dallas Mavericks headed to Los Angeles to play the Clippers

James Harden and the Rockets were looking for their sixth straight win after a 10-14 start to the season, but they lost Chris Paul to a hamstring injury and Eric Gordon's final 3-pointer rimmed out to give the Rockets the loss.

In the nightcap, Mavs big man DeAndre Jordan made his return to Staples Center for the first time to face the Clippers after leaving his original franchise over the offseason. However, he couldn't bring the Mavericks to victory as the Clippers pulled away late in the fourth quarter.

Here's everything you need to know about Thursday's action, along with Friday's schedule.

NBA scores for Thursday, Dec. 20

  • Miami Heat 101, Houston Rockets 99 (Box Score)
  • Los Angeles Clippers 125, Dallas Mavericks 121 (Box Score
  • NBA schedule for Friday, Dec. 21

    *All times Eastern 

    Clippers crowd welcomes Jordan back 

    Mavericks center DeAndre Jordan received a warm welcome from the crowd during his return to Staples Center, and he was also acknowledged with a tribute video by the Clippers. Jordan played 10 seasons with the Clippers from 2008 to 2018. The big man finished with 11 points and 22 rebounds in his homecoming.

    Miami stops Rockets' winning streak

    The Rockets had a chance to leave Miami with their sixth straight win, but Eric Gordon's 3-pointer rimmed out as time expired. Josh Richardson led the Heat with 22 points, seven assists and six rebounds.

    CP3 leaves with injury

    Chris Paul pulled up lame after chasing after a loose ball, and went directly to the locker room. He did not return to the game after suffering a hamstring injury.

    Wade rises for baseline jam

    Dwyane Wade may be 36 years old, but he still has no problem getting to the rim. On this play, Wade blew by Brandon Knight on the baseline and rose up to throw down the ferocious one-handed slam dunk.

    Harden connects with Capela on lob

    The Rockets have been one of the hottest teams in the NBA as of late with a five-game winning streak entering Thursday's game. Houston went on a 12-2 run in the opening quarter to help stretch out their lead, and it was highlighted by a tremendous alley-oop from James Harden to Clint Capela.

    Rockets look for another win after record 26 treys

    Despite their rough start to the season, the Rockets are beginning to look more like the team that won 65 games last season. They converted on a record 26 treys in last night's win over the Washington Wizards and are looking for their sixth straight win as they visit the Heat.

    And in honor of Harden's infamous double step-back from Monday's win over the Utah Jazz, here's a nice video of the reigning MVP as he travels to South Beach.

    DeAndre will start against Clippers

    DeAndre Jordan was questionable to play versus his former team due to an illness, but according to multiple reports, he will play and start on Thursday.