HOUSTON (AP) — James Harden scored 21 points and Greg Smith added 20 to help the Houston Rockets to a 101-89 win over the Boston Celtics on Friday night.
Harden had 10 points, four assists, two rebounds and a steal in the third quarter as Houston built its lead.
The Rockets used a 9-2 run capped by a 3-pointer by Harden to open the period and go on top 52-47. They never trailed after that and cruised to the victory.
Paul Pierce led Boston with 18 points after scoring a season-high 34 in the Celtics’ double-overtime win at Dallas on Wednesday.
Harden, who had scored 30 or more in his last two games, got off to a slow start before heating up in the third quarter.