Bobcats-Rockets Preview

Associated Press  |  Last updated March 14, 2012
The Houston Rockets got the signature win they were looking for to get back on track. Another victory over the lowly Charlotte Bobcats would be just as meaningful. Houston seeks its 11th victory in 13 meetings versus Charlotte on Wednesday night, while the Bobcats take another crack at winning consecutive games for the first time this season. The Rockets played without their starting backcourt Tuesday, but rookie Chandler Parsons - who set a new career high - and Courtney Lee picked up the slack with 21 points apiece in a 104-103 win at Oklahoma City. Leading scorer Kevin Martin sat out with a strained right shoulder and Kyle Lowry is sidelined 2-4 weeks with a bacterial infection, but Houston (23-20) charged back from an 11-point deficit in the final three minutes to surprise the Thunder. For a Rockets club that had lost six of its previous seven games, the dramatic win could be exactly what was needed. "If it's not this one, I don't know what will do it,'' said Luis Scola, who finished with 18 points, five rebounds and four assists. "It's very difficult to get a win that will pump you up more than this one because of all the circumstances. "It's very difficult to get an emotional win better than this one." It's unclear if Martin will be able to play against the Bobcats, who are coming off an emotional victory of their own. Rookie Bismack Biyombo blocked a dunk attempt at the buzzer to help Charlotte (6-34) earn a 73-71 win at New Orleans on Monday, ending a three-game losing streak. Gerald Henderson scored 15 points, Kemba Walker had 14 and Biyombo added 12 for the Bobcats, who have the NBA's worst record. "I really am (proud). I could just see ourselves fading at the end of the game, but we hung in there," coach Paul Silas said. "For the last play of the game, Bismack came in and blocked the shot and gave us the win. That was awesome. For a kid 19 years old and really has not played the game this much, he retained exactly what we talked about and came up with the big block." The Bobcats' struggling offense may be without its top scorer for this contest, as Corey Maggette left Monday's game with back spasms after playing 10 minutes and scoring two points. Maggette, averaging a team-best 15.5 points, is day-to-day. He also missed an 82-70 loss to Houston on Jan. 10 due to a strained left hamstring. That contest was merely one of many low-scoring games for the Bobcats, who have failed to reach 80 points 13 times and are averaging an NBA-worst 86.8. Biyombo went scoreless and Parsons netted a then career-high 20 points in the January meeting, as Houston won for the 10th time in these teams' last 12 matchups. The Rockets also have won six straight home meetings with the Bobcats. They've only lost to Charlotte at home once, a 90-87 defeat Dec. 22, 2004, in the Bobcats' first trip to Houston.
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