The Houston Rockets (36-17) defeated the Washington Wizards (25-27) 113-112 on Wednesday night thanks to a game-winning layup from James Harden with 0.7 seconds remaining.
Despite turning the ball over 26 times, the Rockets escaped with their seventh straight victory after Trevor Ariza committed a costly foul with four seconds remaining. The foul, which was called before the Rockets were able to in-bound the ball, gave Houston a free-throw (which Harden converted) and the ball back, which led to Harden's game-winner.
In 41 minutes, Harden finished with 35 points on 8-of-14 shooting (16-of-16 from the free-throw line), six rebounds and six assists.
Dwight Howard continued his hot play with 24 points (10-of-16 from the line), 16 rebounds and three blocks while posting a team-best mark of plus-16 in 37 minutes. However, Howard did lead all players with seven turnovers.
Chandler Parsons joined Howard with a double-double of his own, one that consisted of 18 points and 12 rebounds.
Jeremy Lin, who started for the injured Patrick Beverley, was one of five Houston players to finish in double figures, totaling 16 points and five assists.
As for the Wizards, Ariza exploded for 32 points on a career-high 10-of-14 shooting from three, including seven makes from beyond the arc in the third quarter. He pulled down 11 rebounds, as well, before fouling out in the game's waning seconds.
John Wall added 19 points and 14 assists while Bradley Beal racked up 20 points on 8-of-24 shooting in the loss.
Both teams will be off until next week as they're treated to some much-need rest over the All-Star break.
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