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(Saturday, March 30th)
Final Score: Houston 98, LA Clippers 81
Houston, TX (Sports Network) - Omer Asik had a double-double and the Houston Rockets locked down defensively in the second half to earn a 98-81 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers on Saturday at Toyota Center.
Asik tallied 13 points and 12 rebounds, while Chandler Parsons, Jeremy Lin and Francisco Garcia each chipped in with 15 points to help fill the offensive void left by James Harden, who sat with a sore foot.
"I thought everyone played with a lot of effort," said Rockets coach Kevin McHale. "We were more physical after kind of getting out done physically the last couple of games. The ball really moved tonight and it was good to see that."
Carlos Delfino added 11 points as the Rockets snapped a five-game skid against the Clippers.
For the second straight night, Los Angeles was denied a franchise-best 50th win. Chris Paul had a team-high 19 points, Jamal Crawford followed with 15 and Blake Griffin scored 12 in the defeat.
"They played harder than we did," said Clippers coach Vinny Del Negro. "We were terrible, our effort was terrible, our attitude was terrible, our urgency was terrible, very disappointed."
Despite missing its leading scorer Harden, Houston managed to stay in control of the Pacific Division-leading Clippers and maintained a 55-50 lead at halftime before breaking the game open in the second half.
Parsons' triple four minutes into the third bumped Houston's edge to double- digits, and later on, contributed another during the Rockets' quarter-closing 15-4 run to create an 85-63 spread. Houston shot 11-for-19 in the period.
The Clippers were brutal offensively in the second half, failing to reach 20 points in either quarter. Houston held them to 32.5 percent shooting over the last two periods and Los Angeles never came closer than 14 points in the fourth.
The Rockets were dominant in the paint throughout, outscoring the Clippers 48-26, and Garcia's 13-point second quarter -- which included a trio of 3- pointers -- helped keep the Rockets in front over the last 8 1/2 minutes of the period.
The Rockets moved to 26-11 at home ... The Clippers' Matt Barnes left the game with a sprained left ankle and did not return ... Houston scored 19 points off Los Angeles' 19 turnovers ... The Rockets shot 9-for-25 from long distance.
03/31 00:58:27 ET
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