Rockets
Clippers
88 - 71 Final
  for this game

Fourth-quarter run helps Rockets rout Clippers

Nov 27, 2007 - 7:59 AM By John Reger PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

LOS ANGELES (Ticker) -- After a fast start to the season, the Houston Rockets quickly fell off. However, a pair of blowout wins seem to have them back on track.

Tracy McGrady scored 36 points and Rafer Alston added 17 as the Rockets used a huge fourth quarter to down the Los Angeles Clippers, 88-71, on Monday.

Houston won six of its first seven games of the season, but lost six straight to fall under .500 for the first time this season. But with a 109-81 home win over the Denver Nuggets on Saturday and this victory, the Rockets appear to be regaining their form from early November.

"It was obviously a great win to get starting out a four-game trip," Rockets coach Rick Adelman said. "The first one is always important."

McGrady suggested that the team slipped into some old bad habits during the losing streak.

"We kind of got away from what we all worked on in training camp," McGrady said. "We went back to the way we played last year. Slowing the ball down and just trying to pound the ball on the inside. That was not how we played when we were 6-1."

McGrady had just eight points in the first half but went on a tear in the second half, including 19 in the final quarter as the Rockets went on a fourth period-opening 22-5 run to turn a one-point lead into an 81-63 advantage.

"We struggled during certain stages in the third quarter, but Tracy McGrady just took it up another notch and took the game over," Adelman said.

"I saw gaps in their defense," McGrady said. "First half, I was not very aggressive. I was not looking for the ball. I tried to get other guys involved and let the offense flow. It was a close game at halftime, so at the (start of the) third quarter, I wanted to come out and assert myself offensively."

Yao Ming, hampered by early foul trouble, still managed to score 14 points and grab eight rebounds for Houston.

Center Chris Kaman, who is the only Clipper to start every game so far this season, had 18 points in the first half and finished with 22 points and 13 rebounds.

Both guard Brevin Knight and forward Corey Maggette came back in reserve roles for Los Angeles after missing multiple games due to injury. They were needed when guard Sam Cassell went down at 8:18 of the first quarter after straining his left calf.

He did not return to the game and the team was uncertain about the extent of the injury.

"It's an on-going battle," Clippers coach Mike Dunleavy said. "There's not much to say about it except it's just one guy gets healthy, another gets hurt."








  • NBA
    HOUSTON 88
    LA CLIPPERS 71 FINAL

    Nov 27 12:55 AM


  • NBA
    HOUSTON 59
    LA CLIPPERS 58 END, 3RD QTR

    Nov 27 12:21 AM


  • NBA
    HALFTIME 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    HOUSTON 21 19 40
    LA CLIPPERS 24 15 39 HALFTIME
    HIGH SCORERS AT HALFTIME

    Nov 26 11:45 PM


  • NBA
    HOUSTON 21
    LA CLIPPERS 24 END, 1ST QTR

    Nov 26 11:08 PM