Oakland, CA – James Harden shook off a rough shooting night and sealed the win at the foul line, as the Houston Rockets earned another victory over the Golden State Warriors, 94-88, at Oracle Arena.
Harden was limited to 3-of-17 from the field and the Rockets shot a meager 37 percent overall. They didn't make a field goal over the final 4 1/2 minutes, but ended the game on an 8-2 run via free throws to earn their third win in the last four games.
Harden finished with 20 points and 11 assists, while Chandler Parsons made six 3-pointers en route to a team-high 26 points.
"We definitely had some positive steps in our defense," Harden said. "On the road, playoff-atmosphere game, it shows the type of camaraderie we've got and the kind of togetherness we're building."
The Warriors have dropped all three meetings with Houston this season and fell to 2-1 on their seven-game homestand. Stephen Curry had 24 points and eight assists, Klay Thompson followed with 22 points and David Lee battled through a knee contusion to net 16 points in the loss.
Harden earned four trips to the stripe after the game was tied 86-86 inside four minutes remaining. He split a pair with 69 seconds left to give the Rockets a 90-88 edge, and Harrison Barnes missed a pullup jumper at the other end.
Jeremy Lin added two free throws with 44.4 seconds to go, and after Curry was short on a deep 3-point try, the Warriors turned the ball over the next time they got the ball to end any chance of a comeback.
Thompson had 11 points in the first quarter and helped hold Harden to 0-for-6 shooting from the field. His block on Harden and finger roll at the buzzer gave the Warriors a 30-21 lead.
Lee was in the locker room getting his right knee evaluated during a second quarter controlled by the Rockets, who ended the half on a 14-3 run to take a 50-48 edge into the break.
Lee returned at the start of the third and Curry's 10-point frame carried the Warriors into the fourth with a 76-73 lead.
Golden State missed its first nine shots and had five turnovers in the first 5 1/2 minutes of the fourth. The Rockets capitalized with a 9-0 run to take an 82-76 lead, but the hosts tied it at 86-86 on Barnes' tough bucket inside with 3:50 remaining.
"Missed shots," Golden State coach Mark Jackson said of his team's struggles in the fourth. "At times we were careless and at times we were too passive...didn't put pressure on them. That was the difference...we settled."
Lee grabbed five rebounds, ending a string of eight straight double-doubles ... Houston's Carlos Delfino scored all 12 of his points in the second quarter ... The Warriors, who shot 38 percent from the field, were wearing their short-sleeved jerseys for a second time this season ... The Rockets have won 17 of the last 19 encounters between the teams.