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Sport Rockets spoil Chris Paul's return with victory over Thunder

05:25  29 october  2019
05:25  29 october  2019 Source:   chron.com

Hot takes we might actually believe: Rockets will be chemistry disaster

  Hot takes we might actually believe: Rockets will be chemistry disaster Hot takes we might actually believe: Rockets will be chemistry disaster

The Rockets offense that had been such faithful companions for so long again abandoned them through stunning stretches. But for the second-consecutive game, it showed up just long enough.

Schroder leads Thunder past winless Warriors, 120-92

  Schroder leads Thunder past winless Warriors, 120-92 Dennis Schroder scored 22 points to help the Oklahoma City Thunder rout the Golden State Warriors 120-92 on Sunday.The blowout matched Oklahoma City's largest margin of victory over the Warriors since the franchise moved from Seattle before the 2008-09 season.

The Rockets rode one strong shooting third quarter to build a cushion just large enough for them to hold on, topping Oklahoma City, 116-112, Monday at Toyota Center.

BOX SCORE: ROCKETS 116, THUNDER 112

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Russell Westbrook, in his first game against his former team, had 21 points, nine assists and 12 rebounds. James Harden led the Rockets with a season-high 40 points, including four free throws in the final 13 seconds left to seal the win.

Chris Paul, in his return to Houston, had 15 points for the Thunder.

As with their win against the Pelicans on Saturday, the Rockets won the hard way when they seemed to be putting a team in the second half of a back-to-back away.

The Rockets led by seven with 3 ½ minutes left after Westbrook spiked a fast-break slam, but when Danilo Gallinari and Paul wrapped 3s around a Westbrook jumper, the Thunder were within three heading into the final two minutes.

Irving's double-double lifts Nets past Harden, Rockets

  Irving's double-double lifts Nets past Harden, Rockets The Rockets' usual problems sent them to a 123-116 loss to the Brooklyn Nets on Friday.Instead, the Rockets' usual problems sent them to a 123-116 loss to the Brooklyn Nets on Friday, with their broken defense to open the season unable to slow the Nets until the hole was too great to escape.

Finally, the Rockets got the 3-pointer they had spent the fourth quarter to find.

P.J. Tucker, the only Rockets player that had been hitting them reliably all night, nailed a corner 3 with 54.8 seconds left, taking a pass from Westbrook on an offensive rebound, to put the Rockets up six as the Rockets survived despite making just 2 of 15 shots in the first eight minutes of the fourth quarter. Tucker made 5 of 7 3s, scoring 17 points.

For much of the night, however, the rest of the Rockets misfired.

Confident as the Rockets were – and likely remain – that Harden would find his shooting touch, the issues went another way. His shooting slump spread.

The Rockets launched 25 3-pointers in the first half. They made four of them with Harden’s 2 of 9 better than most.

They nearly got away with that when they briefly got away from the 3-happy attack. With a flurry of drives and fast breaks, they reduced a 15-point Thunder lead to three. They then fired six 3-pointers in the final three minutes of the half, missing them all, to trail, 62-52, heading into the second half.

See Vin Diesel's 21st birthday post to Paul Walker's daughter Meadow

  See Vin Diesel's 21st birthday post to Paul Walker's daughter Meadow The Fast & Furious franchise star has remained close to close to Paul's daughter following his death six years ago this month.On Nov. 4, Vin posted a photo of Paul's only child, Meadow Walker, on Instagram and captioned it with a loving message. "I could say that I am so proud of the person you are becoming... but the truth is I have always been proud of you. Happy Birthday Meadow!" he wrote. "I know it's your 21st and you wanted to go big in Japan, but the family has a cake waiting for you when you get home, so hurry. Love you kid. Uncle Vin.

Much of that was a credit to Thunder guard Dennis Schroder, who made as many 3s in his five attempts as the entire Rockets team put in with their 25 shots from deep, scoring 18 points in 17 minutes off the bench.

The Rockets got their offense going with a method that seemed even more unlikely than suddenly pouring in 3s. They cranked up their defense, got stops and got to the rim. Along the way, they made 5 of 9 3-pointers in the third quarter, more than in the entire first half. But the aggressiveness turned the game around, building a 13-point lead.

Before they could enjoy it, they went cold again, missing their first nine shots of the fourth quarter and needing 5:15 to score.

The Rockets headed into the final four minutes clinging to a four-point lead that looked shakier by the minute.

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