Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Harden scores 53, racks up triple double in victory

Rockets guard James Harden drives through the lane past the Knicks defense during the second half. Harden finishes with 53 points, 17 assists and 16 rebounds in a 129-122 victory.

Associated Press

Rockets guard James Harden drives through the lane past the Knicks defense during the second half. Harden finishes with 53 points, 17 assists and 16 rebounds in a 129-122 victory.

HOUSTON — James Harden had 53 points, 17 assists and 16 rebounds for his second straight triple double, and the Rockets beat the short-handed Knicks 129-122 Saturday night.

Harden set career highs for points and 3-pointers with nine and matched his career best for assists. He passed his previous career best of 51 on a 3 with 1:16 left, leading to a standing ovation.

The Knicks got within three several times in the fourth quarter, the last coming on a layup by former Gator Joakim Noah with about four minutes left. Harden responded to Noah's basket with three free throws before dishing to Ryan Anderson for a 3-pointer that made it 119-111.

Another 3 by Anderson with less than two minutes left extended the lead to 124-113.

Harden, who had 30 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists in Friday's 140-116 victory against the Clippers, completed his eighth triple double this season when he grabbed his 10th rebound with about 10 minutes left in the third quarter.

It was his 17th career triple double and his fourth career 50-point game.

The Knicks played without starters Kristaps Porzingis (sore Achilles tendon) and Courtney Lee (sore right wrist) because of injuries. They lost another one at halftime when Carmelo Anthony was sidelined by a sore left knee. He had seven points in the first half.

Anderson added 25 for the Rockets.

Game Highlights: Russell Westbrook had another triple double with 17 points, 12 rebounds and 14 assists as the host Thunder cruised past the Clippers 114-88. … LeBron James scored 17 of his 32 in the first quarter, and the visiting Cavaliers beat the Hornets 121-109. … Giannis Antetokounmpo scored 35, Jabari Parker added 27 and the visiting Bucks used a huge fourth quarter to beat the Bulls 116-96. … Mike Conley had 22 points and eight rebounds, and the visiting Grizzlies overcame an ankle injury to Marc Gasol to beat the Kings 112-98. … Rudy Gobert had 18 points and 13 rebounds and Gordon Hayward added 18 points and nine rebounds in the host Jazz's 91-86 victory over the Suns.

Around the League: Rajon Rondo was out of the Bulls' lineup, one day after being benched for poor play against the Pacers. Coach Fred Hoiberg called it a "strictly basketball" move.

Harden scores 53, racks up triple double in victory 12/31/16 [Last modified: Saturday, December 31, 2016 11:18pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Bucs journal: Kicker Nick Folk has up and downs against Jaguars


    JACKSONVILLE — If the Bucs had hoped for a drama-free night in their kicking game, they'll have to wait another week.

    Bucs kicker Nick Folk celebrates one of his two made field goals against the Jaguars, but he also misses a field goal and has an extra point blocked.
  2. Bucs top Jaguars behind strong first half



    There is a reason why the air in Tampa Bay is filled with playoff talk. If Thursday night's 12-8 Bucs preseason win over the Jaguars is any indication, it's also going to be filled with footballs thrown by quarterback Jameis Winston.

    Doug Martin gets the Bucs’ only touchdown  on a 2-yard run, squeaking past linebacker Telvin Smith in the first quarter. He has five carries for 30 yards.
  3. Rays journal: Archer has strong outing, with two mistakes

    The Heater

    TORONTO — Two pitches RHP Chris Archer didn't execute are the ones that stood out Thursday as Josh Donaldson hit them out of the park. But the two solo home runs aside, Archer turned in a sterling outing that went atop the pile of good pitching the Rays keep wasting.

    Rays starting pitcher Chris Archer (22) works during the first inning. [Nathan Denette/The Canadian Press via AP]
  4. Tim Tebow continues wowing fans as he wraps up bay area games


    CLEARWATER — Tracey Fritzinger has seen Tim Tebow play baseball a few times this year. The 40-year-old St. Petersburg resident went to two of his games against the Tampa Yankees, along with Joy, her little sister from Big Brothers Big Sisters of America.

    St. Lucie Mets outfielder Tim Tebow, middle, hangs out in the dugout during Thursday night’s game against the Clearwater Threshers at Spectrum Field, the last of St. Lucie’s eight-day trip to the Tampa Bay area.
  5. Rays vs. Mariners, 7:10 Friday, Tropicana Field

    The Heater

    Tonight: vs. Mariners

    7:10, Tropicana Field

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun, 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

    Tampa Bay Rays relief pitcher Austin Pruitt (50) in the dugout during the ninth inning of the game between the New York Yankees and the Tampa Bay Rays on Opening Day at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, April 2, 2017. The Tampa Bay Rays beat the New York Yankees 7-3.