Houston ran roughshod over Dallas in the first half after tallying 38 points in the first quarter and 23 in the second, and it held an 11-point lead at halftime thanks to the defensive stylings of Dwight Howard and Harden's steady offensive output.
However, the Rockets struggled with turnovers all night long, totaling 22, and nearly gave the lead away in the third quarter when the Mavs employed a Hack-a-Howard strategy to slow down the pace and slowly chip away at Houston's lead.
Ultimately, the Mavs couldn't find their stroke from the floor, and when Dirk Nowitzki fouled out with 6:11 remaining in the fourth quarter, the game was all but over.
Houston shot 46.6 percent from the field and 37.9 percent from three compared to 38 and 33.3 percent for the Mavericks.
It wasn't pretty, but the Rockets now sit at 2-0. A matchup with the Utah Jazz in Salt Lake City is on tap for Saturday.