Los Angeles Lakers vs. Houston Rockets: Live Score, Results and Game Highlights
A game that saw the Los Angeles Lakers dominate for three quarters ended in a miraculous Houston Rockets' victory, by a final score of 107-105.
The Rockets' bench keyed a victory that looked improbable at halftime, as Houston was outscored 58-45 in the game's first-half.
Greg Smith and Toney Douglas came off of the Houston bench to combine for 43 points (and a combined +41), leading the Rockets to a big upset win at home.
As has been the case lately, James Harden and Jeremy Lin both struggled to get going, as the two put up a combined 19 points on 5-of-27 shooting.
Employing the "Hack-a-Dwight" strategy late in the fourth quarter, the Rockets took the Lakers out of their offensive flow, stymieing any positive energy Kobe Bryant had been building.
Bryant finished with a game-high 39 points, but Dwight Howard could only muster 16 points (8-of-16 from the free-throw line) and 12 rebounds on the night.
Filling in for the injured Pau Gasol, Antawn Jamison contributed 15 points, but was quiet for the majority of the second half.
The Lakers drop to 8-10 on the season while the Rockets improve to 9-8.
Keep it locked here on Bleacher Report for postgame coverage of Lakers-Rockets.
Rockets' final box score, courtesy of NBA.com
Lakers' final box score, courtesy of NBA.com
Houston 107, Los Angeles 105 - Final.
Rockets' plus/minus numbers:
Patrick Patterson: -1
Omer Asik: -19
Chandler Parsons: -18
Jeremy Lin: -18
James Harden: +3
Greg Smith: +21
Toney Douglas: +20
Carlos Delfino: +20
Marcus Morris: +2
Houston 107, Los Angeles 105 - Final.
Lakers' plus/minus numbers:
Antawn Jamison: +2
Chris Duhon: +7
Kobe Bryant: -4
Dwight Howard: +9
Metta World Peace: +1
Jodie Meeks: -1
Jordan Hill: -11
Earl Clark: -4
Darius Morris: -9
Houston 107, Los Angeles 105 - Final.
Kobe Bryant misses a great look from three that would have given the Lakers the win, and Metta World Peace can't convert a tip-in as time expires.
What a quality win for the Rockets, especially on a night in which they received little help from their backcourt of James Harden and Jeremy Lin.
Kobe Bryant finishes with a game-high 39 points (14-of-31 shooting), but the Lakers simply couldn't find any offensive rhythm in the fourth quarter once the Rockets engaged the "Hack-a-Dwight" strategy.
Toney Douglas and Greg Smith combined for 43 points for the Rockets off of a bench that totaled 59 points on the evening.
By comparison, the Lakers' bench totaled just 20 points.
It's still early, but the heat is on in L.A.
Lakers lose 17-point lead, lose 107-105 to Houston. Without Pau, without Nash.... but MAN THAT PANIC BUTTON LOOKS FUN RIGHT NOW.— Eye on Basketball (@EyeOnBasketball) December 5, 2012
Houston 107, Los Angeles 105 - 8.0 seconds to go in Q4: Kobe Bryant (who else?) knocks down a three and the Rockets head back to the line where Toney Douglas makes just one of two free-throws.
It will be the Lakers' game to win, lose or tie, and the ball will surely be in the hands of Kobe.
Houston 106, Los Angeles 102 - 15.7 seconds remaining in Q4: Greg Smith with two huge free-throws to make it a two possession game in Houston. Smith has 21 points on the night.
Want to know some of the problems with Hack-a-Dwight from the Lakers' perspective?
Hack-a-Dwight works because it makes Kobe thirsty for shots— Ethan Strauss (@SherwoodStrauss) December 5, 2012
All the extra possessions created by hacking Howard helped get ORL 40 4th Q points on Sunday, & HOU 33 tonight.— Mike Trudell (@LakersReporter) December 5, 2012
Houston 104, Los Angeles 102 - 1:11 remaining in Q4: Believe it or not, it's the Rockets who appear to have more continuity on the offensive end.
James Harden knocks down two free-throws to up his point total to 15 (nine of which are from the free-throw line).
Los Angeles 102, Houston 100 - 2:09 remaining in Q4: The Rockets decide to foul Dwight Howard yet again, but this time he knocks down both.
However, this will be the last time the Rockets employ the Hack-a-Dwight tactic.
Delfino misses a 3 and Rockets use their final hack-a-Dwight.— Jonathan Feigen (@Jonathan_Feigen) December 5, 2012
Houston 100, Los Angeles 99 - 2:30 remaining in Q4: Toney Douglas knocks down a three from the corner, giving the Rockets the lead, and Dwight Howard heads back to the line (he's made two of his last six attempts).
Wow. What are the Lakers doing on D?— David Aldridge (@daldridgetnt) December 5, 2012
Los Angeles 98, Houston 97 - 3:00 remaining in Q4: Greg Smith is having the game of his life (he's surpassed his previous career-high of 13 points), totaling 17 points, seven rebounds and two blocks going up against Dwight Howard.
For a game that looked well out of reach for Houston at the half, the Rockets have come all the way back to climb within one without much help from Jeremy Lin or James Harden.
Los Angeles 97, Houston 93 - 3:18 remaining in Q4: And...we've entered the "Hack-a-Dwight" portion of this evening's programming, and Howard misses both attempts. Meanwhile, Dwight fouls James Harden on the other end (his fourth of the game) and The Beard is headed to the line.
Dwight Howard comes up empty on two FTs, bring him down to 3-for-8 from the line for the game.— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) December 5, 2012
Los Angeles 95, Houston 91 - 4:00 remaining in Q4: With Kobe Bryant's recent comments in the forefront of most of his teammates, it may behoove the Lakers to pull this one out.
So if the Lakers actually do blow this one, will Kobe really beat up everybody? He said "if need be."— Jonathan Feigen (@Jonathan_Feigen) December 5, 2012
Los Angeles 94, Houston 90 - 5:01 remaining in Q4: The Lakers appear to be self-destructing before our eyes with some careless turnovers in the half-court.
Expect Kobe to go full Mamba on everyone as this game gets closer.
Los Angeles 92, Houston 88 - 5:50 remaining in Q4: Greg Smith, playing in place of Omer Asik (four fouls), has 13 big points off of the bench and has trimmed the Laker lead to four.
Jamison's careless pass was the Lakers' 18th turnover of the game. They were tied for the league lead w/ 16.7 per game coming into tonight— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) December 5, 2012
Los Angeles 92, Houston 85 - 6:11 remaining in Q4: The Rockets are within seven, which begs this question. Has the Lakers' offense just been bad tonight?
Kobe Bryant has 31 points, but the team is now shooting just 47 percent from the field (31 percent from three), and there hasn't been any one player who has sought to take over with Kobe absent.
James Harden is now 2 for 18, but Houston's hanging around, down 7 with 6:11 as Howard & Kobe are set to return, both well rested.— Mike Trudell (@LakersReporter) December 5, 2012
Los Angeles 92, Houston 81 - 7:15 remaining in Q4: Jordan Hill and Chris Duhon, two unsung heroes, have helped maintain a double-digit lead.
Hill is approaching a double-double (nine points and nine rebounds) while Duhon has held down the fort nicely at point guard with six points, seven assists and four rebounds.
Los Angeles 90, Houston 77 - 9:47 remaining in Q4: So far, so good for the Lakers' bench. Jordan Hill looks like a man playing for regular minutes, making strong cuts off of the ball and finishing in the paint.
Hill with seven points and six rebounds in 12 minutes so far tonight.
Los Angeles 83, Houston 75 - 11:30 remaining in Q4: The first six minutes of the fourth quarter will be key for the Lakers, as their second unit will be asked to hold down the fort once again.
As it stands, Chris Duhon, Jodie Meeks, Antawn Jamison, Jordan Hill and Metta World Peace are the five on the floor for Mike D'Antoni.
This second unit sans Howard or Kobe held up well in the 2nd Q, but has barely played together. Tricky spot here.— Mike Trudell (@LakersReporter) December 5, 2012
Los Angeles 83, Houston 73 - End of Q3: The Rockets have made a push against the Lakers' second unit, but Kobe Bryant has found ways to stretch the lead to double-digits.
Bryant leads all scorers with 31 points while Antawn Jamison has chipped in with 15 points of his own. Dwight Howard has been relatively quiet, compiling 11 points and 11 rebounds through three quarters.
James Harden and Jeremy Lin continue to be non-factors for the Rockets, although the emergence of Chandler Parsons, Carlos Delfino and Toney Douglas has kept Houston alive for much of the second-half.
Los Angeles 80, Houston 69 - 1:38 remaining in Q3: Just to clarify, James Harden is having a putrid night shooting from the field. He is 2-of-15 and has eight points.
A complete summary here:
Earl Clark has as many made field goals as James Harden. That doesn't bode well for the Rockets.— Lakers Nation (@LakersNation) December 5, 2012
Los Angeles 80, Houston 68 - 3:00 remaining in Q3: Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard work a pretty two-man game from the low-post to the top of the key which results in a Kobe dropping in the hoop and drawing the foul.
With Omer Asik out of the game it's imperative that the Lakers maximize their post looks now.
Los Angeles 75, Houston 68 - 3:52 remaining in Q3: Chandler Parsons is helping revive this once-moribund offense, and is the fourth Rockets' player to register double-figures in the scoring column.
The Lakers' second unit, particularly Earl Clark and Jodie Meeks, are being exploited on the defensive end, which is the primary reason the Rockets are back in this one.
Los Angeles 75, Houston 64 - 4:28 remaining in Q3: Scoring numbers nobody expected entering tonight: James Harden and Jeremy Lin with 11 combined points.
Toney Douglas and Carlos Delfino? 27 combined points.
Los Angeles 75, Houston 59 - 5:30 remaining in Q3: Jeremy Lin attempts to drive the lane and is denied emphatically by the hand of Dwight Howard.
I guess that's why the Rockets have been so reluctant to penetrate this evening.
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