Curry Forces Overtime, Warriors Outlast Rockets
OAKLAND (CBS / AP) — Stephen Curry made a tying layup with 3.2 seconds left in regulation and finished with 25 points, and the Golden State Warriors outlasted the Rockets 102-99 in overtime Thursday night to halt Houston’s eight-game winning streak.
Just after James Harden hit a go-ahead jumper, Curry came back with a left-handed layup over Dwight Howard to send the game to the extra session. The Warriors got a big boost in overtime when Jermaine O’Neal, who was filling in for injured center Andrew Bogut, blocked Chandler Parsons’ baseline dunk attempt at the rim.
Curry followed with two free throws to give Golden State a 98-95 lead with 15.9 seconds left. The teams traded free throws as the Rockets ran out of time.
Harden scored 34 of his 39 points in the second half to rally the Rockets on a night neither side shot well. Golden State shot 39.8 percent from the floor, while Houston shot 36.6 percent.
David Lee had 28 points and 14 rebounds, Klay Thompson and Jordan Crawford scored 12 points each, and O’Neal added 10 rebounds and two blocks.
Howard grabbed 21 rebounds and scored 11 points on 4-for-13 shooting, and Parsons added 21 points and eight rebounds as Houston lost for the first time since Jan. 25 at Memphis. It was the Rockets’ longest winning streak since a franchise-record, 22-game run in 2007-08 season.
Playing on consecutive nights made for two tired teams until both picked up the intensity late in the fourth quarter.
Harden stripped Lee as he turned to shoot out of the post, then hit a go-ahead shot from 23 feet over Thompson that put Houston ahead 89-87 with 6.9 seconds to play in regulation.
After the Warriors called timeout to advance the ball to half court, Curry received a pass from Andre Iguodala while running off a screen and drove to his left and to the hoop. With Howard approaching, Curry floated a left-handed layup over the Rockets’ center for the tying score with 3.2 seconds left.
Harden missed a 3-pointer at the regulation buzzer.
Curry connected from beyond the arc at the start of the extra period, but neither side could pull away. The momentum shifted for good when Parsons slipped down the baseline, received a pass from Harden and went up for a one-handed dunk only to be emphatically denied by the veteran O’Neal, bringing the announced sellout crowd of 19,596 roaring to their feet.
The Rockets were forced to foul Curry with time running out. He made both free throws, then the Warriors intentionally fouled Harden so he couldn’t attempt a tying 3-pointer.
Harden and Curry trade free throws before the Warriors stole the ball from the Rockets to finish off a thrilling game that had far more action than either team made on the final day before the trade deadline passed.
The Rockets sent third-string point guard Aaron Brooks to Denver for shooting guard Jordan Hamilton. After acquiring point guard Steve Blake from the Lakers for reserves Kent Bazemore and MarShon Brooks on Wednesday night, Golden State stuck to its plans not to part ways with any of its young core.
Blake entered the game to a standing ovation with 4:34 remaining in the first quarter. He gave fans another reason to roar when he hit his first shot — pulling up for a 3-pointer — in the final seconds of the quarter.
Blake finished with three points, two rebounds and one assist in 19 minutes but became a side note as the Rockets rallied from 11 points down in the third quarter and the teams traded highlights into overtime.
NOTES: Rockets coach Kevin McHale was whistled for a technical foul for arguing a charging call against Jeremy Lin at the end of the first quarter. The foul on Lin was waved off after officials ruled time had expired following a video review. The technical stood. … Houston won both previous meetings this season against the Warriors, including once in Oakland. … The Warriors return to action Saturday night at home against Brooklyn. The Rockets don’t play again until Sunday at Phoenix.
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