Rockets upend Celtics

Houston - James Harden scored 21 points and Greg Smith added 20 to help the Houston Rockets to a 101-89 win over the Boston Celtics on Friday night.

Harden had 10 points, four assists, two rebounds and a steal in the third quarter as Houston built its lead.

The Rockets used a 9-2 run capped by a 3-pointer by Harden to open the period and go on top 52-47. They never trailed after that and cruised to the victory.

Paul Pierce led Boston with 18 points after scoring a season-high 34 in the Celtics' double-overtime win at Dallas on Wednesday.

Harden, who had scored 30 or more in his last two games, got off to a slow start before heating up in the third quarter. Chandler Parsons added 15 points and Omer Asik had nine points and 10 rebounds for the Rockets.

Rajon Rondo had 15 points, 13 assists and four steals for Boston, but also committed seven turnovers. Kevin Garnett chipped in 14 points.

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