First-time All-Star James Harden had 30 points and the Houston Rockets broke out of their worst slump of the season by beating the New Orleans Hornets 100-82 on Friday night.
The Rockets, who had lost eight of nine and trailed by double digits in 12 straight games, led almost all the way this time. Harden scored 10 points and Patrick Patterson had six during a 16-2 run early in the third quarter as Houston took control, going ahead 64-46.
The Hornets never got closer than 10 the rest of the way, losing for only the third time in their last 10 games.
Harden, chosen as an All-Star reserve for the Western Conference on Thursday, handed out eight assists and was 12 for 12 on free throws.
Patterson added 18 points and a season-high 13 rebounds. Jeremy Lin had 13 points and eight assists for Houston, matching his assist total from the previous three games combined.
Eric Gordon scored 20 points for New Orleans, which shot 38.8 percent. Ryan Anderson added 19 points off the bench, but ...