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Harden paces Rockets over Sixers
Houston, TX (Sports Network) - James Harden posted a game-high 33 points along with seven assists as Houston thumped Philadelphia, 125-103, on Wednesday.
Jeremy Lin gave 18 points and six assists while Omer Asik added 17 points and 15 rebounds for the Rockets, who have been the victor in four of their past five.
"I'm starting to see us react a little better to certain situations," said Houston head coach Kevin McHale. "We've got to go out and get stops. If we get stops we can get out and get some pace in game."
Nick Young scored 21 points while Dorell Wright added 20 points, six rebounds and six assists for the Sixers, who are on a season-high five-game losing streak.
"We hung in there for about as long as we could," said Philadelphia head coach Doug Collins. "We just couldn't get any stops and Harden controlled the game. We are just so undermanned."
The Rockets never trailed in this game after scoring the first three points and holding a 15-6 lead after an Asik layup with 7 1/2 minutes left in the first quarter.
Philadelphia scored seven straight to trim its deficit late in the frame, but Harden made a bucket at the buzzer for a 33-24 lead going into the second quarter.
An 8-0 run from the Sixers in the second cut their deficit to one after Thaddeus Young put in a bucket for a 35-34 game with 8 1/2 minutes to play in the half.
Houston, though, was able to pull away again with a 15-3 run to push the lead back to double-digits before Philly answered with a brief burst to trail by five, 56-51, after 24 minutes.
Another burst from Philly again saw the team get to within one as Thaddeus Young converted a three-point play for a 72-71 game with under six minutes to play in the third.
Asik and Harden countered with a pair of free throws each to start an 11-4 run and Houston took an 89-79 lead into the final frame.
A Thaddeus Young layup with under eight minutes to play got the Sixers to within eight at 98-90, but Houston put the game away with a 17-5 run and built its lead to as high as 25 down the stretch.
It was a season-high in points allowed for the Sixers ... Houston hosts Memphis on Saturday ... Philadelphia returns home to face the Hawks on Friday ... The Rockets have won the past two games against the Sixers ... The Rockets shot 56 percent and had 29 assists on 42 shots ... Philadelphia shot just 44.9 percent in the game.
12/20 00:01:26 ET