Without Harden again, Paul leads Rockets to rout of Suns


PHOENIX — Chris Paul scored 25 points to lead six Houston players in the double figures and the Rockets, still without injured James Harden, rolled past the Phoenix Suns 112-95 on Friday night.

Houston, in its sixth straight game with Harden sidelined by a hamstring injury, led by 18 in the second quarter, 22 at the end of the third and 27 in the fourth in its sixth consecutive victory over Phoenix.

Clint Capela scored 17 points and grabbed 16 rebounds for the Rockets, who dominated the boards 53-38. Ryan Anderson and Trevor Ariza added 18 points apiece and Eric Gordon 14.

Devin Booker scored 27 and T.J. Warren 21 for the Suns, who were coming off a home win over Oklahoma City four days earlier.

Phoenix got off to a fast start, scoring 10 straight points, capped by Dragan Bender’s 3-pointer, to lead 21-10.

Then things turned sour for the home team.

The Rockets outscored the Suns 37-8 over the final 5:05 of the first quarter and first 6:47 of the second, when Anderson’s two free throws put Houston on top 47-29 with 5:13 left in the first half. The Rockets led 57-44 at the break, despite Booker’s 18 points.

Houston scored the first four points of the second half and Phoenix never got closer than 15 after that.

TIP-INS

Rockets: At 30-11, the Rockets have their fourth-best record at a season’s midpoint in franchise history. … Houston is 4-2 since Harden was injured. … The Rockets have won in Phoenix nine straight times and have beaten Suns 13 of last 15 overall. … Capela’s career high in rebounds is 20. … …read more

Source:: Sportsnet.ca

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