NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Wednesday, March 19th (All times eastern)
Houston Rockets (46-21) at New Orleans Hornets (45-21), 8 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Houston Rockets attempt to get back on the winning track when they visit the New Orleans Hornets tonight at New Orleans Arena.
The Rockets are tied with the Los Angeles Lakers for the top spot in the Western Conference playoff race. New Orleans trails the Rockets by just a half game in the Southwest Division standings and for No. 1 in the West.
Houston opens a three-game swing against the Hornets. Kevin Garnett led the way with 22 points and 11 rebounds, as Boston used strong inside play and defense to stop Houston's 22-game winning streak, 94-74, ending the second- longest victory surge in NBA history on Tuesday at the Toyota Center.
The Rockets' franchise-record win streak was well short of the Lakers' all- time 33-game run during the 1971-72 season.
Luis Scola had 15 points and eight rebounds, while Rafer Alston and Mike Harris both scored 12 and Aaron Brooks netted 10 in the loss to the Celtics for Houston. Tracy McGrady ended with eight points,seven rebounds and eight assists for the Rockets, who were limited to 41.4 percent shooting, including a 5-of-19 from three-point range.
The Rockets, who have won 12 in a row as the visitor, are 20-11 on the road this season. They will visit Golden State on Friday and Phoenix on Saturday in the final two contests of the current swing.
The last time the Rockets lost on the road was on January 2 at Boston.
The Hornets play the middle contest of a three-game homestand. On Monday, Chris Paul scored a game-high 37 points and dished out 13 assists to give New Orleans a come-from-behind 108-97 victory over the Chicago Bulls.
Peja Stojakovic pored in 21 points and grabbed 10 rebounds, while Bonzi Wells contributed 19 points off the bench for the Hornets, who have captured three of their last four games overall.
New Orleans is 25-10 at home this season. The Hornets will host the Celtics on Saturday at New Orleans Arena.
All-Star forward David West (sprained right ankle) is questionable for the Hornets. West is averaging 19.7 points and 9.1 rebounds per game this season. The Xavier product has missed two straight games.
This is the final meeting of the regular season between the clubs. Houston is 2-1 against the Hornets and has won the last two meetings.
These two teams have split the last 14 meetings at the Hornets.
03/19 12:11:18 ET