HOUSTON (AP) — Rookie Luka Doncic and Devin Harris each scored 20 points, and the Dallas Mavericks beat Houston 128-108 on Wednesday night despite a triple-double by Rockets star James Harden.
Harden had 25 points, 17 assists and 11 rebounds, but it wasn’t nearly enough for a team missing Chris Paul because of an injury. Houston dropped its fourth in a row after winning a season-high five straight.
Houston trailed for most of the night but used a 33-point third quarter to trim a huge deficit to seven heading into the fourth. The Mavericks got going again in the final period, opening with a 10-2 run highlighted by back-to-back reverse layups by J.J. Barea.
Clint Capela made a layup for Houston before the Mavericks used an 11-2 spurt to push their lead to 117-95 with seven minutes remaining, prompting Rockets coach Mike D’Antoni to clear the bench.
It’s the third straight win for the Mavericks and just their second victory on the road this season after dropping seven of their first eight games away from home. It also ended an eight-game regular season skid against Houston.
Paul sat out for the third straight game after resting the first game and missing the last two with a sore left hamstring. Capela and James Ennis had 18 points apiece for the Rockets, who are in 13th place in the Western Conference.
The Mavericks led by 18 entering the third quarter after scoring 74 points in the first half behind 15 points from Doncic. The Rockets opened the second half with a 13-5 run to cut the lead to 79-69 with about eight minutes left in the third. Ennis led the way, scoring nine points.
Dallas pushed its lead back out to 13 before Danuel House and Harden made back-to-back 3-pointers to get Houston within seven at 86-79. The Mavericks’ advantage was down to five when a layup by Dwight Powell made it 96-89 entering the fourth.
It was Harden’s first triple-double this season and No. 36 for his career. The reigning NBA MVP scored 54 points on Monday night.
Mavericks: Dennis Smith had 10 points in his return after missing Saturday’s game with a sprained right wrist. … DeAndre Jordan had 13 points and seven rebounds. … The Mavericks made 19 of 24 free throws.
Rockets: Capela has scored at least 10 points in 19 straight games. … Coach Mike D’Antoni said Nene, who hasn’t played all season because of a strained right calf, was making progress but he still doesn’t know when he’ll be ready to return. … Gerald Green missed his second game in a row with a sore right ankle.
Mavericks: Visit Lakers on Friday night.
Rockets: Visit San Antonio on Friday night.
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