Beal, Westbrook lead Wiz past Pacers 142-115 for East 8 seed
Russell Westbrook nearly had a triple-double and Bradley Beal scored 25 points in just 29 minutes to help the Washington Wizards reach the NBA playoffs as the Eastern Conference’s No. 8 seed by overwhelming the Indiana Pacers 142-115 in the play-in round.
Nets lose Harden but beat Rockets, move into first in East
Houston Rockets' Kevin Porter Jr. (3) and Jae'Sean Tate (8) defend against Brooklyn Nets' Kyrie Irving during the first half of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, March 31, 2021, in New York. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)NEW YORK – Kyrie Irving had 31 points and a season-high 12 assists, and the Brooklyn Nets overcame the loss of James Harden to beat the Houston Rockets 120-108 on Wednesday night and move into first place in the Eastern Conference. Harden sat out the fourth quarter against his former team with right hamstring tightness, finishing with 17 points, eight rebounds and six assists. The Rockets jumped to a 24-6 lead, with an 8-for-9 start that included makes on all five 3-point attempts. The Rockets listed the injury as a left knee effusion and it's unknown whether it will keep him out longer.
Porter scores 25 points, Rockets beat Timberwolves 129-107
Houston Rockets guard John Wall (1) drives on Minnesota Timberwolves guard Jaylen Nowell (4) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Saturday, March 27, 2021, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Andy Clayton-King)MINNEAPOLIS – Kevin Porter Jr. scored 25 points in his return to Houston’s lineup, John Wall had 13 points and 12 assists and the Rockets rebounded to beat the Minnesota Timberwolves 129-107 on Saturday night. The Rockets came back a night later to win for the second time in four games after a 20-game losing streak. Kelly Olynyk added 16 points in his first game for Houston after coming over from Miami in the trade for Victor Oladipo. Led by their holdover star Wall, the Rockets shot 73.9% in the first quarter and scored 41 points.
Towns scores 29 as TWolves come back to beat Rockets 107-101
Minnesota Timberwolves guard Jaylen Nowell (4) shoots against Houston Rockets forward Sterling Brown (0) in the fourth quarter during an NBA basketball game, Friday, March 26, 2021, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Andy Clayton-King)(AP) – Karl-Anthony Towns had 29 points and 16 rebounds, and Juancho Hernangomez had 19 points off the bench as the Minnesota Timberwolves came back to beat the Houston Rockets 107-101 on Friday night. Towns had 14 points during the final stretch as the Timberwolves won for the fourth time in 15 games under new coach Chris Finch. After being held to three points in the second and third quarters, Towns came back to pull Minnesota ahead. Carelessness crept in and Houston took advantage.
AP source: Pistons agree to trade Delon Wright to Kings
Detroit Pistons guard Delon Wright (55) dribbles the ball as Houston Rockets guard John Wall (1) defends during the first quarter of an NBA basketball game Friday, March 19, 2021, in Houston. (Troy Taromina/Pool Photo via AP)DETROIT – The Detroit Pistons have agreed to trade guard Delon Wright to the Sacramento Kings for guard Cory Joseph and two second-round draft picks, according to a person with knowledge of the deal. The person spoketo The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Thursday because the trade had not been announced. The 6-foot-5 Wright has averaged 10.4 points a game this season for the rebuilding Pistons. He has spent the past season and a half with the Kings.
Terry Rozier scores 25 points, Hornets cruise past Rockets
Houston Rockets guard John Wall dribbles the ball as Charlotte Hornets guard Malik Monk defends during the fourth quarter of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, March 24, 2021, in Houston. (Troy Taormina/Pool Photo via AP)(AP) – Terry Rozier scored 25 points, Devonte’ Graham added 21 and the Charlotte Hornets beat the Houston Rockets 122-97 on Wednesday night. AdFor Houston, John Wall had 20 points and seven assists, and Christian Wood added 11 points and 10 rebounds. Following a 26-26 tie at the end of the first quarter, Charlotte took a 58-55 lead into halftime, thanks in large part to 9-for-19 shooting from 3. In their previous meeting in Charlotte’s 119-94 win on Feb. 8, the Rockets scored just seven points in the fourth quarter.
Rockets end skid at 20, Wall has 1st triple-double since ’16
Houston Rockets' John Wall (1) drives on Toronto Raptors' Fred VanVleet (23) during the third quarter of an NBA basketball game Monday, March 22, 2021, in Houston. But Wall had 19 points, 10 assists and 11 rebounds, his first triple-double since March 17, 2016. The Rockets closed out the third quarter with an 88-86 lead and opened the fourth quarter on a 9-1 run to pull away. AdThe Raptors led 28-27 at the end of the first quarter. In their losing streak, Houston led after the first quarter only three times, including on Feb. 26 when they led the Raptors 31-30.
Rockets lose team-record 20th straight game, fall to Thunder
(AP Photo/Michael Wyke)HOUSTON – Mired in a long losing streak, the Houston Rockets twice put the ball in John Wall's hands in the waning moments. The Rockets lost their team-record 20th straight game, falling to the Oklahoma City Thunder 114-112 Sunday when Wall missed two shots in the final 10 seconds. This one hurts.”Dort scored 23 points and Isaiah Roby had 18 for the Thunder, who led by as many as 13 points. They shot a sizzling 14 of 21 on 3s in the second quarter, however, and Oklahoma City led 66-62 at halftime. The Rockets hit a franchise-record 28 3s in a win against the Thunder on Feb. 1, just three days before their last win.
Pistons hand Rockets franchise-worst 19th straight loss
Houston Rockets guard Victor Oladipo (7) shoots as Detroit Pistons center Isaiah Stewart (28) defends during the fourth quarter of an NBA basketball game Friday, March 19, 2021, in Houston. (Troy Taromina/Pool Photo via AP)HOUSTON – Frank Jackson had a season-high 23 points and the Detroit Pistons handed the Houston Rockets their franchise-record 19th straight loss, 113-100 on Friday night. The injury-plagued Rockets were playing just their fourth game of the season where Christian Wood, Victor Oladipo and John Wall were all available. Wall had 21 points and seven assists, Oladipo had 19 points, and Wood 18 points and 11 rebounds. Rockets: Wall was charged with a flagrant foul on a second-quarter collision with Frank Jackson and later received a technical foul for arguing with officials in the third quarter.
Pistons hand Rockets franchise-worst 19th straight loss
Houston Rockets guard Victor Oladipo (7) shoots as Detroit Pistons center Isaiah Stewart (28) defends during the fourth quarter of an NBA basketball game Friday, March 19, 2021, in Houston. (Troy Taromina/Pool Photo via AP)(AP) – Frank Jackson had a season-high 23 points and the Detroit Pistons handed the Houston Rockets their franchise-record 19th straight loss, 113-100 on Friday night. It was fun being out there.”Jerami Grant added 18 points, Josh Jackson had 15, and Isaiah Stewart 13. Wall had 21 points and seven assists, Oladipo had 19 points, and Wood 18 points and 11 rebounds. Wood averaged 13.1 points and 6.3 rebounds in 62 games and 12 starts with Detroit last season before signing with Houston in the offseason.
Warriors hand Rockets franchise-record 18th straight loss
Golden State Warriors' Draymond Green keeps the ball from Houston Rockets' Danuel House Jr. during the first quarter of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, March 17, 2021, in Houston. (Carmen Mandato/Pool Photo via AP)(AP) – Draymond Green had 16 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists and the Golden State Warriors handed the Houston Rockets their franchise-record 18th straight loss, 108-94 on Wednesday night. Golden State breezed past the struggling Rockets to snap a season-high four-game road losing streak. It’s the first time the Rockets have lost nine consecutive home games since they dropped 11 straight in 1983. Poole led Golden State in the second, making 15 points and hitting 4 of 6 3-point attempts.
Fox scores 30, Kings hand Rockets 14th straight loss 125-105
NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images)SACRAMENTO, Calif. – De’Aaron Fox had 30 points, nine assists and seven rebounds, and the Sacramento Kings sent the Houston Rockets to their 14th consecutive loss, 125-105 on Thursday night. Sacramento never trailed after a 15-0 run early in the second quarter. … Center Justin Patton picked up his fourth foul with 6:47 left in the second quarter. … Sacramento was called for two shot clock violations in the second quarter.
Rockets say they’re trying to trade P.J. Tucker
SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The Houston Rockets say they are attempting to trade disgruntled forward P.J. At some point there was some mutual agreement with P.J., his agent, (Rockets general manager Rafael Stone) and the organization that P.J. With Tucker averaging career lows in scoring (4.4 points) and shooting percentage (36.6), the Rockets initially planned to have Tucker come off the bench in the game against Sacramento. AdWhen the game started, Tucker was not on the Rockets bench and was not seen at Golden 1 Center. “We’re going to try to figure out something that works for (Tucker) and works for us,” Silas said.
USA Basketball picks 57 players for men's Tokyo Games pool
USA Basketball is a step closer to choosing the team that will play in this summer’s rescheduled Tokyo Olympics, releasing the names Thursday of 57 players who are part of the pool to fill the squad. It’s also already drawing major interest from some NBA stars who have yet to taste Olympic gold. USA Basketball will pare the list to a 12-person Olympic team by early summer. Jordan, who now plays for Brooklyn, is also a newcomer to the pool even though he was on the 2016 Olympic team. “But for USA Basketball to receive the commitment of so many outstanding players remains an indicator of the great honor of representing your country means to these men.”
James Harden has triple-double in Houston return, Nets roll
Brooklyn Nets' James Harden drives to basket for a layup past Houston Rockets' Ben McLemore, left, during the second quarter of an NBA basketball game Wednesday, March 3, 2021, in Houston. 13 on his jersey, James Harden won so many games for the Houston Rockets. 13 had a triple-double for the Brooklyn Nets to send the reeling Rockets to their 13th straight loss. But the Nets scored the next eight points, with two 3s from Harden, to extend it to 113-97 midway through the quarter. Rockets: Eric Gordon missed a second straight game with a sore left knee.
Depleted Raptors hand Rockets 10th straight loss
(AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)TAMPA, Fla. – Norman Powell scored 30 points, Kyle Lowry had a triple-double and the depleted Toronto Raptors beat the Houston Rockets 122-111 on Friday night. AdLowry had 20 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists to help the Raptors hand the Rockets their 10th straight loss. Victor Oladipo led the Rockets with 27 points, and John Wall had 21 points and 12 assists. TIP-INSRockets: The last time the Rockets lost 10 straight games was Nov. 23-Dec. 20, 2001 during a 15-game losing streak. Raptors: The Raptors have not been involved in any of the NBA's 29 coronavirus postponements so far this season.
Knicks send Rockets to fifth straight loss with 121-99 win
New York Knicks guard RJ Barrett dunks next to Houston Rockets' John Wall (1) during the second quarter of an NBA basketball game Saturday, Feb. 13, 2021, in New York. (Wendell Cruz/Pool Photo via AP)NEW YORK (AP) – Julius Randle and rookie Immanuel Quickley each scored 22 points and the New York Knicks sent the Houston Rockets to a season-high fifth straight loss with a 121-99 victory Saturday night. “I thought the unselfishness was important and then we had a number of guys just step up and make shots,” Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau said. ... Ray Spalding scored two points in his Rockets’ debut after being called up from the Rockets’ NBA G League affiliate Friday and signed to a two-way contract. The Knicks said Robinson was evaluated by their medical staff Saturday and surgery was recommended.
Jimmy Butler has triple-double, leads Heat past Rockets
Houston Rockets' DeMarcus Cousins, right, gets possession of the ball next to Miami Heat's Jimmy Butler during the first quarter of an NBA basketball game Thursday, Feb. 11, 2021, in Houston. (Carmen Mandato/Pool Photo via AP)(AP) – Jimmy Butler had a triple-double with 27 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists and the Miami Heat overcame a slow start to beat the slumping Houston Rockets 101-94 on Thursday night. They remained up by 12 after a dunk by Adebayo before Houston used a 9-0 run to get to 97-94 with less than a minute to go. AdThe Heat missed two shots after that but got the rebound both times, with Butler grabbing the second one. The Heat used a 12-0 run to take a 70-59 lead in the third quarter and limited the Rockets to just 10 points in the quarter.
DeRozan has 30 as Spurs hold on for 111-106 win over Rockets
San Antonio Spurs forward DeMar DeRozan (10) drives to the basket in front of Houston Rockets forward Jae'Sean Tate, right, during the first half of an NBA basketball game Saturday, Feb. 6, 2021, in Houston. (AP Photo/Michael Wyke)(AP) – DeMar DeRozan scored 30 points and the San Antonio Spurs held off a late charge from the Houston Rockets for a 111-106 victory Saturday night. John Wall made a layup for Houston with less than 30 seconds left, but Patty Mills hit two free throws for San Antonio to extend it to 109-104. Tucker made two free throws for Houston after that, but Rudy Gay made two for San Antonio to secure the victory. A 3-pointer by David Nwaba got Houston within eight in the third, but the Spurs scored the next five points to push it to 82-69.
Wall, Gordon lead Rockets past Grizzlies 115-103
Houston Rockets guard John Wall, left, handles the ball against Memphis Grizzlies forward Kyle Anderson in the second half of an NBA basketball game Thursday, Feb. 4, 2021, in Memphis, Tenn. (AP Photo/Brandon Dill)MEMPHIS, Tenn. – John Wall scored 22 points, Eric Gordon added 20 and the Houston Rockets beat the Memphis Grizzlies 115-103 on Thursday night. Wall said the veteran Rockets have told Tate, a rookie, to stay within his game and take advantage of his shots, particularly corner 3s. Rookie Desmond Bane led the Grizzlies with 16 points, while Ja Morant added 15. After shooting 26% from 3-point range against the Thunder, the Rockets were 19 of 45 (42.2%) against Memphis. For the Houston game, select groups of season ticket holders were added to the previous groups, meaning up to 2,000 people or about 11% of capacity.
Williams scores 19; Thunder win rematch with Rockets 104-87
(AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)(AP) – Kenrich Williams scored 19 points Wednesday night, and the Oklahoma City Thunder bounced back from a 30-point loss to Houston two days earlier and beat the Rockets 104-87. The Rockets scored a season high for points on Monday and a season low on Wednesday. Eric Gordon scored 22 points and Victor Oladipo added 19 for the Rockets, whose win streak ended at six games. Rockets guard John Wall and Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander missed Wednesday’s rematch. Thunder: Oklahoma City announced Tuesday that starting point guard George Hill would miss at least four weeks with a thumb injury.
Nets' Harden to sit out Sunday vs Westbrook, Wizards
Brooklyn Nets guard James Harden (13) goes to the basket in front of Oklahoma City Thunder forward Aleksej Pokusevski, left, in the second half of an NBA basketball game, Friday, Jan. 29, 2021, in Oklahoma City. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)NEW YORK – James Harden will sit out the Brooklyn Nets' game Sunday at Washington, preventing his first matchup with Russell Westbrook since both left Houston. The NBA's leader in assists, Harden had 25 points, 11 assists and 10 rebounds Friday when the Nets routed Oklahoma City 147-125. Harden and Westbrook played together last season, helping the Rockets reach the second round of the playoffs. Harden then pushed to be traded but Westbrook was dealt first to Washington for John Wall.
Rockets beat Trail Blazers 104-101
Houston Rockets' John Wall reacts during the second quarter against the Washington Wizards in an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021, in Houston. (Carmen Mandato/Pool Photo via AP)(AP) – Victor Oladipo scored 25 points and the Houston Rockets shook off a terrible first quarter and held on late to beat the Portland Trail Blazers 104-101 on Thursday night. The Rockets got going after that, scoring the next six points, with a 3 from Oladipo, to make it 92-88. The Trail Blazers had a one-point lead before a 4-0 spurt by the Rockets gave Houston a 99-96 lead with less than two minutes to go. TIP-INSTrail Blazers: Carmelo Anthony had just six points after scoring a season-high 22 points in the last game.
Wall scores 24 to lead Rockets over Wizards 107-88
Houston Rockets' John Wall reacts during the second quarter against the Washington Wizards in an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021, in Houston. (Carmen Mandato/Pool Photo via AP)HOUSTON – John Wall scored 24 points in his first game against his former team, leading the Houston Rockets to a 107-88 victory over the Washington Wizards on Tuesday night. He cooled off in the third, but got going again in the fourth to put the game away in his second game back after missing five with a sore left knee. Houston was leading by six when Wall re-entered the game with about seven minutes left. The Wizards called a timeout after that, and Wall yelled and jumped as he looked at the opposing bench before bounding back to the Houston side.
Bulls beat Rockets 125-120; Oladipo solid in Houston debut
Victor Oladipo #7 of the Houston Rockets gets off a shot around Lauri Markkanen #24 of the Chicago Bulls at the United Center on January 18, 2021 in Chicago, Illinois. CHICAGO – Zach LaVine scored 33 points, and the Chicago Bulls overcame a strong effort by Victor Oladipo in his Houston debut, beating the Rockets 125-120 on Monday night. Oladipo looked good in his first game for Houston, pouring in 32 points. Bulls: The Bulls held out rookie forwards Patrick Williams (bruised right hip) and Otto Porter Jr. (strained lower back). Bulls: The Bulls play at Charlotte on Friday before the defending champion Los Angeles Lakers visit on Saturday.
Spurs end 4-game home skid, top short-handed Rockets 103-91
Jae'Sean Tate #8 of the Houston Rockets is tied up by Keldon Johnson #3 of the San Antonio Spurs #3 and LaMarcus Aldridge #12 at AT&T Center on January 16, 2021 in San Antonio, Texas. SAN ANTONIO – San Antonio couldn’t match the intensity of the short-handed Houston Rockets for three quarters, yet a strong finish by the Spurs was enough to snap a four-game home losing streak. “We played our best defense in the fourth quarter,” Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. He had 23 points, seven rebounds and three assists in 36 minutes during Houston’s 109-103 victory on Thursday. Spurs: Spurs assistant coach Becky Hammon remains out, along with reserve center Drew Eubanks, due to the league’s health and safety protocols.
Rockets rally past Spurs 109-105 in 1st game without Harden
Kenyon Martin Jr. #6 of the Houston Rockets drives for two over Jakob Poeltl #25 of the San Antonio Spurs at AT&T Center on January 14, 2021 in San Antonio, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Cortes/Getty Images)SAN ANTONIO – Christian Wood had 27 points and 15 rebounds, and the Houston Rockets rallied to beat the San Antonio Spurs 109-105 on Thursday night in their first game since trading away franchise cornerstone James Harden. Spurs veteran DeMar DeRozan missed a 15-footer with 0.4 seconds left, and San Antonio fouled P.J. The teams meet again Saturday at the AT&T Center in the finale of a two-game set in San Antonio. Spurs: San Antonio is 6-3 with LaMarcus Aldridge in the lineup.
James Harden headed to Nets in blockbuster multiteam deal
Houston Rockets' James Harden leaves the court following a loss to the Los Angeles Lakers in an NBA basketball game Sunday, Jan. 10, 2021, in Houston. The Nets acquired the three-time scoring champion from the Houston Rockets in a deal that became official on Thursday, a move Harden has sought for weeks. Harden is the centerpiece of a deal that also involved Cleveland and grew to a fourth team when Indiana, made a separate deal with Houston. All are under contract through 2022-23, with Harden and Durant both set to earn more than $40 million in each of the next two seasons. Brooklyn expects Harden to leave all that behind him and that his transition to the Nets will be smooth.
Harden says ‘crazy’ Rockets situation can’t be fixed
Houston Rockets guard James Harden (13) and coach Stephen Silas, right, react after a play during the second quarter against the Los Angeles Lakers in an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2021, in Houston. (Troy Taormina/Pool Photo via AP)HOUSTON – The James Harden drama has hit a new level and many believe now it is time for the organization to move Harden sooner rather than later. Harden publicly acknowledged his discord with the Rockets for the first time Tuesday night following back-to-back blowout losses to the Los Angeles Lakers. It’s something that I don’t think can be fixed.”.#Rockets post game James Harden "I love this city, done all I can, it can't be fixed." He’s averaged at least 25 points per game in each of his eight full seasons with the Rockets.
Brogdon’s late 3 helps Pacers shake off Rockets, 114-107
Malcolm Brogdon #7 of the Indiana Pacers shoots the ball during the first half against the Houston Rockets at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on January 6, 2021 in Indianapolis, Indiana. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Michael Hickey/Getty Images)INDIANAPOLIS – Malcolm Brogdon scored a career-high 35 points and made the go-ahead 3-pointer with 2:22 to go, leading the Indiana Pacers past the Houston Rockets 114-107 on Wednesday night. Pacers: Holiday's first 3-pointer of the game late in the first quarter was his 133rd off the bench for Indiana. ... Doug McDermott left in the second half with a sprained left ankle and did not return.
Wall, Rockets beat Kings 102-94; Harden sits with injury
Sacramento Kings' Buddy Hield (24) looks to pass ahead ofHouston Rockets' John Wall (1) during the first quarter of an NBA basketball game Saturday, Jan. 2, 2021, in Houston. (Carmen Mandato/Pool Photo via AP)HOUSTON – John Wall scored 28 points and the Houston Rockets beat the Sacramento Kings 102-94 on Saturday despite playing without an injured James Harden. “I just put in a lot of hard work and dedication to get to this point," Wall said. The Rockets scored the first nine points of the fourth quarter to extend their lead to 92-81 with about 8½ minutes left. Rockets: Houston hosts Dallas on Monday night and will play four of its next five games at home.
Wall makes Houston debut, Rockets beat Kings 122-119
Houston Rockets guard John Wall passes the ball around Sacramento Kings' Harrison Barnes during the first half of an NBA basketball game Thursday, Dec. 31, 2020, in Houston. (AP Photo/Richard Carson)HOUSTON – John Wall had 22 points and nine assists in his first game since 2018, James Harden had a big finish to score 33 points and the Houston Rockets beat the Sacramento Kings 122-119 on Thursday night. Late in the fourth, Wall found James Harden in transition for a deep 3-pointer that gave Houston a one-point lead. Rockets: Houston was hosting its first regular- season home game since March 10, before COVID-19 derailed last season. ... KJ Martin and Ben McLemore remain away from the team and are self-isolating per COVID-19 protocols.
Jokic’s triple-double leads Nuggets past Rockets 124-111
DENVER, COLORADO - DECEMBER 28: James Harden #13 of the Houston Rockets drives to the basket against Gary Harris #14 of the Denver Nuggets in the third quarter at Ball Arena on December 28, 2020 in Denver, Colorado. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)DENVER – Nikola Jokic had 19 points, 18 assists and 12 rebounds for the 42nd triple-double of his career, and the Denver Nuggets beat the short-handed Houston Rockets 124-111 on Monday night for their first win of the season. Houston dressed nine players against the Nuggets following a two-point overtime loss at Portland in the season opener Saturday. Nuggets: Complete a back-to-back set with their first road game Tuesday night at Sacramento, which handed Denver a 124-122 overtime loss in Wednesday’s season opener.
McCollum scores 44 to lift Trail Blazers past Rockets in OT
(AP Photo/Steve Dykes)PORTLAND, Ore. – CJ McCollum scored 44 points, including a 3-pointer with 6.3 seconds left that gave the Portland Trail Blazers a 128-126 win over the Houston Rockets on Saturday night. Lillard’s layup pushed the Blazers ahead 125-123 with 30 seconds left in overtime, but Harden made a 3 to push the Rockets ahead with 15.3 seconds left. Then with 6.3 seconds left, the ball found McCollum again and the Blazers’ guard hit another long range shot putting Portland ahead 128-126. After Wood cut the Blazers lead to 123-120 with a layup, Harden tied the game again at 123 with 38.6 seconds left. Harden responded with a basket of his own to tie it again at 113 with 38.9 seconds left.
Magic beat Wizards130-120 despite Westbrook's historic night
Orlando Magic guard Markelle Fultz (20) shoots as Washington Wizards forward Isaac Bonga (17) and forward Deni Avdija (9) defend in the fourth quarter of an NBA basketball game Saturday, Dec. 26, 2020, in Washington. (Geoff Burke/Pool Photo via AP)WASHINGTON – The Orlando Magic beat Washington 130-120 on Saturday night, overcoming another triple-double by Russell Westbrook in his home debut for the Wizards. Nikola Vucevic had 22 points and 17 rebounds, and Markelle Fultz added 21 points to help the Magic win its second straight to start the season. ... Two-way rookie guard Cassius Winston (hamstring strain) was inactive but has returned to practice…UP NEXTThe Magic and Wizards will complete their back-to-back in Washington on Sunday. It is the only meeting between the two Southeast division foes in the first half of the NBA schedule release.
Rockets set to go into opener with 9 available players
Houston Rockets' James Harden looks on during the second half of an NBA basketball game against tha San Antonio Spurs in Houston, Thursday, Dec. 17, 2020. (Carmen Mandato/Pool Photo via AP)The Houston Rockets are preparing to have only nine available players, James Harden among them, for their first two games of the season because of ongoing quarantine issues related to the coronavirus pandemic. The Rockets play their opener in Portland on Saturday and visit Denver on Monday. Harden being ineligible to play meant the Rockets did not have the eight available players needed to start a game, so what was to have been their opener on Wednesday against Oklahoma City was postponed. Ben McLemore and Kenyon Martin Jr. are not with the Rockets on the trip and are self-isolating, the team said.
The Latest: USC basketball to return against Santa Clara
The Trojans will host Santa Clara instead of Long Beach State, which had to cancel because of ongoing COVID-19 issues in its program. ___UCLA’s women’s basketball game at Oregon State on New Year’s Day has been postponed indefinitely. The Beavers announced a confirmed case of COVID-19 on Dec. 20. The team issued a statement Saturday announcing the positive test and saying it had closed its facility for tracing. The day's other suspended games include league leader Portsmouth against Swindon Town.
REPORT: At least 3 Rockets players in 7-day quarantine for contact tracing
(AP Photo/Michael Wyke)HOUSTON – The Houston Rockets may be without three of their top players for a week, according to The Athletic’s Shams Charania. The report stated John Wall, DeMarcus Cousins and Eric Gordon could be put in 7-day quarantine for contact tracing. Charania also reports a Rockets staff member had a positive test, with Gordon put into contact tracing connected to that. Wall and Cousins were in a contact tracing situation Thursday after being around Kenyon Martin, Jr., who reportedly tested positive. — Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) December 25, 2020The Rockets have several players — including John Wall, DeMarcus Cousins and possibly more — currently facing seven-day quarantine per NBA contact tracing protocol, sources tell @TheAthleticNBA @Stadium.
Harden practices with Rockets; coach says he'll play Tuesday
HOUSTON – James Harden practiced with the Houston Rockets on Monday for the first time this season after missing the early part of camp while talk swirls that he wants out. Coach Stephen Silas said he spoke with the superstar Monday, but they talked strictly basketball and neither addressed a possible trade. He’s bringing up good points.”So far asking Harden anything hasn’t been an option — the Beard hasn’t spoken to reporters since reporting to camp. Silas said that Harden will make his preseason debut Tuesday night when the Rockets host the Spurs. Silas, in his first year in Houston after taking over for Mike D’Antoni, has said he expects Harden to be “all in” this season.
'Explosive' Durant scores 15 in 1st preseason game with Nets
Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Durant (7) passes during the first half of a preseason NBA basketball game against the Washington Wizards, Sunday, Dec. 13, 2020, in New York. Durant played just under 24 minutes as Brooklyn beat the Washington Wizards 119-114 on Sunday night in its preseason opener. Durant scored 11 points on 3-for-3 shooting during that stretch while Irving scored 12 points on 5-for-6 shooting to help the Nets take a 30-18 lead. Late in the first half, Irving threw a long pass to Durant, whose reverse layup gave the Nets a 58-35 lead. Danilo Gallinari added 17 points and De’Andre Hunter added 15 for Atlanta, which made 17 3-pointers.
The NBA preseason begins, with empty arenas as the stages
Orlando Magic coach Steve Clifford talks to players during a timeout in the first half of the team's NBA preseason basketball game against the Atlanta Hawks on Friday, Dec. 11, 2020, in Atlanta. The NBA preseason — a truncated 49-game, nine-day sprint — opened Friday with a five-game slate, action returning to NBA arenas for the first time in exactly nine months. Friday’s games:KNICKS 90, PISTONS 84At Detroit, R.J. Barrett scored 15 points and Toppin finished with 11 points and seven rebounds in his debut as the Knicks won their preseason opener. Julius Randle scored 11, while Elfrid Payton and Nerlens Noel each scored 10 for New York. Svi Mykhailiuk and Saddiq Bey led the Pistons with 14 points apiece.
'Happy about where I'm at': Westbrook discusses move to DC
“Obviously, I’m not the easiest guy to understand,” Westbrook said. Westbrook was at practice on Saturday with the Wizards, the team that sent former No. “I’m here in Washington,” Westbrook replied. “I’m all about trying to do things the right way, regardless of if anybody likes it or not,” Westbrook said. “My thing is making sure that I’m doing the right thing for the right people and impacting as many people as possible.”___More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/NBA and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
In Rockets trade with Wizards, Wall’s health will be questioned in first action since 2018 season
Wall returns to the NBA after suffering a torn Achilles during the 2018 season. He sat out 2019 and opted out of this past season. In 573 career games with 561 starts for the Wizards, he averaged 19 points, 9.2 assists, 4.3 rebounds, and 1.7 steals. Wall earned All-NBA Third Team honors in 2016-17 and was named All-Defensive Second Team in 2014-15. During his lone season at Kentucky in 2009-10, Wall was teammates with recently signed Rockets center DeMarcus Cousins.
Here’s how fans are reacting to the Russell Westbrook trade news
All rights reserved)HOUSTON – The Houston Rockets are trading Russell Westbrook to the Washington Wizards. — Houston Sports Pain (@HoustonHomer1) December 3, 2020😳😢 I love Westbrook but I totally understand why he wanted to leave. https://t.co/58wiPQOveY — ladyeagles (@brownlq) December 3, 2020So like when the Wizards front office is over Westbrook in 2 years then what? — Barack Oganja (@_RodTheGod_) December 3, 2020Houston rocket fans cheering on Westbrook is if Jordan came back and signed with the Lakers and lebron and Jordan fans had to cheer one another on — OKC 2021 Draft Winner (@whocanstopus2) December 3, 2020Westbrook trade grade: F- - - - -. Rockets get a worse Westbrook and wizards traded their future for a star in his prime.
Rockets trade Russell Westbrook to Wizards
Houston Rockets' Russell Westbrook (0) goes up for a shot as Oklahoma City Thunder's Nerlens Noel, right, defends during the second half of an NBA first-round playoff basketball game in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2020. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)HOUSTON – The Houston Rockets have traded Russell Westbrook to the Washington Wizards. Adrian Wojnarowski said in a tweet that the Rockets got John Wall and a first-round pick in 2023 in the deal. NBA sources confirm to me #Rockets have traded Russell Westbrook to the #Wizards for G John Wall and a 2023 protected 1st Rd pick. @KPRC2 — Randy McIlvoy (@KPRC2RandyMc) December 3, 2020Houston has agreed to trade Russell Westbrook to Washington for John Wall and a first-round pick, sources tell ESPN.
Booker scores 27 points, Suns beat Wizards 125-112 in return
Phoenix Suns guard Devin Booker (1) drives to the basket against Washington Wizards guard Jerome Robinson (12) in the first half an NBA basketball game in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., Friday, July 31, 2020. (Kim Klement/Pool Photo via AP)LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. Devin Booker scored 27 points, Deandre Ayton added 24 points and 12 rebounds and the Phoenix Suns beat the Washington Wizards 125-112 on Friday in their first game of the restart. Booker made all nine of his free throws and Phoenix hit 30 of 32 from the line. Dario Saric added 16 points for the Suns, who shot 52% from the field. Rui Hachimura had 21 points and eight rebounds and Jerome Robinson added 20 points for the Wizards on coach Scott Brooks' 55th birthday.
Wizards' Beal not playing rest of NBA season due to injury
WASHINGTON Wizards leading scorer Bradley Beal wont take part in the restart of the NBA season because of a right rotator cuff injury. The team ruled out Wall traveling to Orlando at the start of team workouts. Beal averaged 30.5 points a game this season, almost twice as much as Bertans, the Wizards' No. That team said that was shoulder discomfort Beal experienced early in the season that worsened over time. This was a difficult decision and one that I did not take lightly as the leader of this team, Beal said in a statement.