After a back-and-forth first quarter that ended with the Hornets up by one, the basement-dwellers of the Western Conference looked to steal one on the road from Jeremy Lin ’10 and the Houston Rockets. But a 25-foot jumper from Lin in the very next frame capped off a 12-5 Rockets run that saw the final lead change of the game.
Lin recorded nine points and seven assists as the Houston Rockets took their second straight in a 104-92 win over the New Orleans Hornets Wednesday night.
Although New Orleans (7-25) briefly tied the game midway through the fourth quarter, Houston (18-14) never fell behind after taking the lead in the second. The Rockets finished strong, outscoring the Hornets in each of the final two periods to hand New Orleans its 13th road loss of the season in 16 away games.
Houston’s James Harden led all scorers with 31 points for his 11th 30-plus point performance of the season. Teammate Omer Asik put down 21 points of his own while rookie Patrick Patterson added 15 points off the bench.
Lin logged a game-high 42 minutes and shot 3-for-10 from the field.
“I’m feeling good,” Lin said after his fourth straight 40-plus-minute game. “Tonight was a tougher one. Shots weren’t falling, so it was an uglier one.”
As the regular season nears its midway point, Houston clings to the sixth spot in the Western Conference. Two games separate the Rockets from the ninth-place Minnesota Timberwolves in a tightening playoff picture.