Thursday, April 27, 2017

James Harden

Houston Rockets' Nene, right, goes up for a shot as Oklahoma City Thunder's Russell Westbrook, left, and another Thunder player defend during the first half in Game 5 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Tuesday, April 25, 2017, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

BY KRISTIE RIEKEN HOUSTON (AP) — James Harden and the Houston Rockets are feeling great heading into the Western Conference semifinals for one big reason. They don’t believe they played well so far despite downing the Russell Westbrook-led Thunder 4-1 ...
Houston Rockets guard Lou Williams, right, loses the ball out of bounds in front of Oklahoma City Thunder forward Doug McDermott, left, in the second quarter of a first-round NBA basketball playoff game in Oklahoma City, Friday, April 21, 2017. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

BY CLIFF BRUNT OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — Russell Westbrook figured out that he didn’t have to do it all. Once that happened, the Thunder figured out how to beat the Houston Rockets. Westbrook scored 32 points in a triple-double and ...
Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook walks down the court in the final seconds of Game 2 of the team's NBA basketball first-round playoff series against the Houston Rockets, Wednesday, April 19, 2017, in Houston. (AP Photo/Eric Christian Smith)

BY KRISTIE RIEKEN HOUSTON (AP) — Russell Westbrook put up gaudy numbers on Wednesday night. The Houston Rockets got a more modest performance from James Harden, but a collective scoring effort helped them rally for a 115-111 win over the ...
Oklahoma City Thunder's Steven Adams shoots against Houston Rockets' Lou Williams (12) and James Harden (13) during the first half of Game 1 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Sunday, April 16, 2017, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

BY KRISTIE RIEKEN HOUSTON (AP) — Although James Harden is Houston’s undisputed star, he can’t top Russell Westbrook entirely on his own. As is so often the case, Patrick Beverley was there for support Sunday night. Harden scored 37 points ...
In this Dec. 9, 2016, file photo, Houston Rockets guard James Harden (13) is defended by Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook (0) on a drive to the basket during the second half of an NBA basketball game in Oklahoma City. (AP Photo/Alonzo Adams, File)

BY BRIAN MAHONEY Russell Westbrook against James Harden is a sensational start to the NBA postseason. Golden State against Cleveland no longer looks like the certain finish. The playoffs open this weekend, highlighted by a must-see matchup in the first ...
Minnesota Timberwolves' Karl-Anthony Towns (32) goes up for a shot against the Houston Rockets during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Wednesday, April 12, 2017, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

BY KRISTIE RIEKEN HOUSTON (AP) — James Harden had his 22nd triple-double with 27 points, 10 rebounds and 12 assists to help the Houston Rockets wrap up the regular season with a 123-118 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday ...
Detroit Pistons' Boban Marjanovic (51) defends on a shot by Houston Rockets' James Harden (13) during the second half of an NBA basketball game Friday, April 7, 2017, in Houston. (AP Photo/Michael Wyke)

It was so easy last year. Stephen Curry was the unanimous Most Valuable Player, Karl-Anthony Towns was the unanimous Rookie of the Year, and most of the other NBA award races turned out to be very one-sided when the votes ...
Houston Rockets' James Harden (13) goes up for a shot as Cleveland Cavaliers' Richard Jefferson (24) and Tristan Thompson, left, defend during the first quarter of an NBA basketball game Sunday, March 12, 2017, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

BY KRISTIE RIEKEN HOUSTON (AP) — James Harden and the Houston Rockets have shown at times this season that they could be title contenders. Lately, however, they’ve failed to rise to the occasion against the NBA’s elite. That changed on ...
New Orleans Pelicans forward Anthony Davis (23) and Houston Rockets center Clint Capela (15) compete for the ball during the second half of an NBA basketball game in New Orleans, Thursday, Feb. 23, 2017. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

BY BRETT MARTEL NEW ORLEANS (AP) — What a bummer of a beginning to the Boogie-and-Brow era in the Big Easy. The Pelicans’ tandem of newly acquired All-Star DeMarcus Cousins and All-Star Game MVP Anthony Davis was no match for ...
Houston Rockets guard Eric Gordon (10) shoots over New York Knicks forward Carmelo Anthony (7) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Saturday, Dec. 31, 2016, in Houston. (AP Photo/Bob Levey)

BY KRISTIE RIEKEN HOUSTON (AP) — Minutes after collecting 53 points, 17 assists and 16 rebounds in his second straight triple-double, Houston’s James Harden was asked what it has been like to play in new coach Mike D’Antoni’s system. “It’s ...
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