It was James Harden’s night at Toyota Center on Monday. The vintage Houston Rockets star poured 45 points to keep his side staying afloat in the Western Conference Final series with a 128-115 win in game 4. The Warriors failed to rout the Rockets and are now 3-1 ahead in the best of seven series.
The Rockets took the lead early by scoring the game’s first 12 points in less than 3 minutes in the 45-point-high first quarter. They extended it to 22 points in the second quarter. MVP Stephen Curry missed out 12 minutes in that spell with a head injury. Curry brought the Warriors closer after his return as they trailed by only 6 points at a point in the final quarter, but Harden scored 7 of Houston’s straight 10 points in a spell to take beyond the reach of Golden State at 114-98. Harden finished with 17 points in the final quarter as the Rockets succeeded in taking the series to Oakland for game 5 on Wednesday.
“We don’t want to go home, man,” Corey Brewer said. “I guess everybody needed to get mad. I feel like it was good for us. We got mad and we did what we needed to do.”
“We couldn’t let anybody come in here and sweep up. Somebody is going to make history. Why not us?”
No team in NBA history has managed to overturn a 0-3 deficit.
Harden finished with a career playoff-high of 45 points, 9 rebounds and five assists. Dwight Howard scored 14 points and 12 rebounds and received a flagrant-1 foul for elbowing an opponent.
Klay Thompson led the Warriors with 24 points and Curry added 23.
The Rockets rallied to win from a 3-1 deficit against the Clippers in the semifinal series.