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NBA Preview from The Sports Network



Saturday, December 28th (All times Eastern)

New Orleans Pelicans (13-14) at Houston Rockets (20-11), 8 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Houston Rockets have won two straight and will try to continue their momentum Saturday night when the New Orleans Pelicans visit the Toyota Center.

The Rockets have knocked off a pair of Southwest Division rivals, the San Antonio Spurs and Memphis Grizzlies, for this mini winning streak. Both games were on national television and Houston is just 3 1/2 games behind the Spurs in the division.

Houston beat the Spurs by 14 on Christmas night, then one night later, took out the Grizzlies, 100-92, at home.

James Harden scored 27 points despite making just two field goals and the Rockets used a big fourth-quarter run to beat Memphis.

The Rockets went on a 19-4 surge with Dwight Howard on the bench, turning a 76-66 deficit into an 85-80 lead with 5 1/2 minutes remaining. Jeremy Lin scored 10 of his 18 points during the surge, the last two on an over-the- shoulder layup after dribbling the length of the court.

Harden was 22-of-25 on free throws. He scored the first Houston points of the game on a 3-pointer then didn't hit another field goal until there were under two minutes left in the game.

"I couldn't make a shot. I just tried to get to the rim," Harden said. "We were kind of stagnant throughout the middle of the game, especially the third quarter. So, I just wanted to get in attack mode."

Terrence Jones had 20 points and Chandler Parsons scored 15 with 11 rebounds for the Rockets, who won back-to-back games for the first time since early December.

Howard finished with two points in just over 18 minutes of foul-plagued action. He is questionable Saturday with a stiff back and guard Aaron Brooks is probable with a sprained ankle.

New Orleans is in the midst of playing 10 of 12 games outside the Big Easy and has won two in a row since a four-game slide. After disposing of the Sacramento Kings on Monday, the Pelicans handed the Denver Nuggets a 105-89 defeat Friday night.

Tyreke Evans finished with 19 points, 10 assists and seven rebounds, while Jrue Holiday and Anthony Davis each scored 17 points in the win. Ryan Anderson added 16 points and 10 boards for the Pelicans, who shot 47.2 percent for the game and scored 22 points off 17 Denver turnovers.

"We wanted this win tonight," Anderson said. "We just played hard and kept going after it."

Evans is averaging 21.6 points per game in his last three.

The Pelicans are 5-9 as the guest and will stop home briefly for a matchup with Portland on Monday. In injury news, guard Eric Gordon (hip) and center Jason Smith (knee) missed Friday's game and are day-to-day. Smith hasn't played since Dec. 18 in a loss against the Los Angeles Clippers.

Houston took three of four from the Pelicans last season and has won four straight and eight of 11 at home in this series.

12/28 10:27:02 ET

Other Stories

  • CBB: Georgetown at St. John's

    Tomorrow at 12:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • ACC: UNC at Miami

    Tomorrow at 2:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • SEC: Arkansas at Kentucky

    Tomorrow at 4:00 pm on WRAL-TV

  • NASCAR: Folds of Honor 500 in Atlanta

    Sunday at 1:00 pm on FOX50

  • NHL: Carolina Hurricanes vs Washington Capitols

    Tonight at 7:00 on 99.9 The Fan

  • ACC: NC State at Boston College

    Tomorrow at 6:00 pm on WRAL-FM

Scoreboard
Local
7:00pm Tonight
CAR
WAS
 
7:30pm Tonight
BOS
CHA
 
Final
CLE 110
GSW 99
Final
PHO 117
OKC 113
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IND
CLE
 
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PHI
WAS
 
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BOS
CHA
 
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TOR
GSW
 
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DET
NYK
 
7:30pm Tonight
ATL
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8:00pm Tonight
HOU
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MEM
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CHI
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DEN
UTA
 
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SAC
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LAL
MIL
 
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POR
OKC
 
Final
KNST 53
NKENTUCKY 78
 
Final
CITA 74
ETST 73
 
Final
GWEBB 91
CSOU 81
 
Final
VMI 82
CHAT 86
 
Final
BRY 77
CCST 69
 
Final
PBY 80
CCAR 69
 
Final
DREX 44
DEL 58
 
Final
UNCA 71
HIGH 75
 
Final
TEMPL 66
HOU 54
Final
EKENT 63
JVST 57
 
Final
WRST 58
UWMIL 61
 
Final
MSU 90
MINN 96
Final
RFLSH 63
MNTER 60
 
Final
OSU 81
NEB 57
Final
MAST 67
NEOM 73
 
Final
ELON 72
NE 65
 
Final
LIB 80
RAD 69
 
Final
FD 85
SHU 90
 
Final
UNCG 81
SAMF 67
 
Final
LIU 69
Terriers 74
 
Final
TENN 65
VANDY 73
Final
RMU 91
WAGN 59
 
Final
FUR 53
WCU 49
 
Final
IUPUI 71
WILL 66
 
Final
CAMP 65
WINT 50
 
Final
MERC 72
WOFF 76
 
Final
APP 58
GSOUT 77
 
Final
UNT 81
CHAR 65
Final
MURST 65
EILL 57
 
Final
MARS 87
FIU 69
Final
WKENT 71
FATL 68
Final
ILLCH 67
UWGB 72
 
Final
ORU 74
NDST 58
 
Final
NDAK 75
NARZ 85
 
Final
RICE 54
ODU 63
Final
MON 60
RIDE 63
 
Final
PEAY 64
SIUE 61
 
Final
LATU 77
UTEP 60
Final
SMISS 70
TXSA 66
Final
TENST 52
TENNM 69
 
Final
CHIST 74
GRCN 70
 
Final
UMKC 69
WLVRN 50
 
Final
SALA 57
LAMON 75
 
Final
ARKST 81
TXARL 80
 
Final
ARKLR 92
UGST 83
 
Final
TXST 67
TROY 61
 
Final
COL 54
ARZ 82
Final
PURD 92
RUTG 85
Final
MEM 57
SMU 66
Final
NCOL 77
SUTAH 67
 
Final
MORE 86
TENT 73
 
Final
EWASH 92
MNTST 68
 
Final
PORT 69
BYU 82
 
Final
CSNO 82
CSFU 72
 
Final
IDAHO 92
MONT 87
 
Final
SCU 57
PAC 64
 
Final
UCSB 74
UCD 60
 
Final
CPSL 56
UCI 63
 
Final
UTAH 83
ARST 41
Final
STAN 75
ORST 48
Final
GONZ 59
SDU 39
Final
USF 53
GAELS 84
 
Final
HAW 78
LBSU 59
 
6:00pm Tonight
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6:30pm Tonight
CORN
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CAN
FAIR
 
7:00pm Tonight
IONA
MAN
 
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BRO
PENN
 
7:00pm Tonight
YALE
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7:00pm Tonight
MAR
PETE
 
8:00pm Tonight
CLMB
DART
 
8:00pm Tonight
AKR
OHIO
 
10:00pm Tonight
CLST
VALPO
 
Final
NYR 4
ARI 3
Final
CLB 2
MON 5
Final
BUF 6
VAN 3
Final
FLA 0
CHI 3
Final
TOR 3
PHI 2
Final
WIN 1
STL 2
Final
NAS 2
MIN 4
Final
SJS 2
DET 3
Final
LOS 0
OTT 1
7:00pm Tonight
NJD
BOS
 
7:00pm Tonight
NYI
CAL
 
7:00pm Tonight
CAR
WAS
 
7:30pm Tonight
TAM
CHI
 
8:30pm Tonight
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10:00pm Tonight
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