HOUSTON: James Harden had 31 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists for his fourth career triple-double, leading the Houston Rockets to a 113-102 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves Monday night at Toyota Center.
The Rockets got off to a slow start, trailing 9-16 at the opening of the first quarter. They managed to cut the deficit and were leading 26-25 at the end. Both teams had a tight second quarter and neither was able to establish a sizeable lead. Houston led 51-46 by halftime.
The Rockets had late spurts in the third quarter and at the beginning of the fourth. They once enlarged their advantage to 14 points. But the Timberwolves responded with a few runs to cut the deficit to one point with less than 4 minutes left.
Harden stood out again, led the Rockets to a 14-2 run, and consolidated their lead. The Timberwolves were unable to erase the gap and Houston held on to their victory.
Harden finished with another triple double, his second this season and the fourth in his career. He also added four blocks. Josh Smith chipped in 17 points and Terrence Jones had 15 for Houston.
Andrew Wiggins grabbed 30 points while Kevin Martin added 21 for the Timberwolves, who lost for the third time in four games.