Houston Rockets guard James Harden scored 34 points along with seven rebounds and seven assists as his team defeated the Los Angeles Clippers 100-98 at the Staples Center on Sunday.
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In a heated battle between two Western Conference rivals, Harden came out on top despite missing a late free throw which gave Chris Paul the opportunity to tie the game late.
However, the Clippers star missed his shot which left the Rockets with the W as they improve to 44-22 for the season while the Clippers slip to 42-25.
Blake Griffin returned from a prolonged injury absence due an elbow infection and put up 11 points, 11 rebounds and eight assists which would have pleased coach Doc Rivers. While it wasn’t enough to get the Clippers the win, it will certainly be a boost for the team down the stretch of the regular season to have him back in the line-up.
Matt Barnes added 19 points while Paul ended the game with 23 points, and DeAndre Jordan grabbed 20 rebounds, but it wasn’t enough for the hosts to deny Harden and Co the victory.
Terrence Jones, Trevor Ariza and Patrick Beverley all played key roles as the support cast, but ultimately it was Harden’s show on Sunday in LA as he continues his pursuit of winning the MVP award while carrying the Rockets towards a strong finish in the West.