Houston Rockets guard Goran Dragic is beginning to make a name for himself and will try to continue his productive ways tonight versus the Indiana Pacers at the Toyota Center.
Dragic has been filling in nicely for an ill Kyle Lowry and is averaging 17.1 points and 9.1 assists in 14 total starts this season. He has started the last 12 games and has scored in double digits over a career-high 14 straight games. Dragic recorded a season-best 25 points and seven assists in Friday's 98-89 win over the Memphis Grizzlies.
Courtney Lee added 17 points for the Rockets, who have won 12 in a row against Memphis in Space City and six of 10 overall. Chase Budinger and Luis Scola donated 13 and 11 points, respectively.
"I just went back to the basics," Budinger said. "I just really got that shot back in practice just by repetition and I went out there feeling confident. In tonight's game, I went out there and I was able to knock them down."
Marcus Camby posted seven points, 16 boards and six blocks for Houston, which shot 52.1 percent from the field and 7 of 14 from three-point range.
The Rockets are 20-7 at home and sit even with Denver for the seventh seed in the Western Conference -- one game behind the No. 6 Grizzlies. After hosting the Pacers tonight, Houston will embark on a four-game road trip against the Bulls, Lakers, Kings and Trail Blazers. The Rockets are 16-0 this season when keeping their opponent below 90 points after going 11-0 in such games in 2010-11.
While Lowry is still on the mend from a bacterial infection, guard Kevin Martin is still out because of a strained right shoulder.
Indiana will close out its quick tour of Texas in Houston and suffered a 112-103 loss against the San Antonio Spurs last night.
Danny Granger and Paul George both netted 18 points for the Pacers, while Roy Hibbert and David West scored 15 points apiece. San Antonio has won nine straight against Indiana and hasn't lost to the Pacers since April 1, 2007.
"The rest of our schedule is kind of tough," remarked Granger about the compact schedule this year. "We don't have any days off in between back-to- backs and whatnot."
The Pacers have dropped two in a row on the road and are 14-14 away from Indy this season. They are currently the fifth seed in the East -- just one-half game ahead of Atlanta.
Indiana and Houston are meeting for the first time since the Rockets swept a home-and-home set a year ago. The Rockets had lost four in a row to the Pacers before busting out the brooms in 2010-11. These two clubs have split the previous eight encounters in Space City. In his 26 games against the Rockets, Pacers forward David West has averaged 18.3 points and 7.6 rebounds per game.