James Harden Scores 58, the Most the Heat Have Given Up, in a Rockets Win

HOUSTON — James Harden had 58 points, 10 assists and 7 rebounds, and the Houston Rockets overcame a 21-point third-quarter deficit to beat the Miami Heat, 121-118, on Thursday night.

Harden was 8 of 18 on 3-point attempts and 16 of 32 over all from the field, and he made all 18 of his free throws. He fell 3 points short of his career high, set against the Knicks on Jan. 23, and had the most point ever against the Heat — breaking Willie Burton’s mark of 53 for Philadelphia on Dec. 13, 1994.

“We get the stat sheet at the end of the game, and I saw he had 58,” the Rockets’ Austin Rivers said. “All of us were like, ‘He had that many points?’ We had no idea he had that many points. That’s a lot of points.”

Rivers scored 17 points, and Chris Paul and Gary Clark each had 14 to help Houston win its fourth straight game. The Rockets shot 49 percent, including 19 of 46 on 3-pointers.

“I wanted to be aggressive and continue to attack the rim. I took my shots when I had the opportunities,” said Harden, adding that his teammates had done likewise.

“It was a total team effort tonight,” Harden said.

Kelly Olynyk and Goran Dragic each had 21 points for Miami, Justise Winslow added 19 points and 8 assists, and Josh Richardson had 18 points. The Heat shot 52 percent, making 15 of 28 3-point attempts.

Miami was coming off a home victory over Golden State on Wednesday night on Dwyane Wade’s banked 3-pointer at the buzzer. Houston played at Charlotte on Wednesday night.

With Houston behind by 113-103 after Dragic’s 3-pointer with 6 minutes 18 seconds remaining, Harden scored 10 points on a 14-0 run that made it 117-113.

Miami had a chance to regain the lead after Paul missed a 3-pointer, but Wade missed a jumper, and Richardson missed a 3-pointer. Paul hit a jumper with 46 seconds left to finish the scoring.

“They just got it going,” Wade said,” and defensively, we weren’t as good as we were early on in the game when we had that lead, and that allowed them to come back.”

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