Chris Paul scored a season-high 32 points and the Houston Rockets opened a season-high five-game road trip by rallying from a 14-point deficit to record a 119-111 victory over the Brooklyn Nets on Friday night.
Paul helped the Rockets avoid their first 1-6 start since 2010-11 by shooting 13-for-27 from the field. Paul also made five 3-pointers, including two that beat the buzzer in the second and third quarters.
Paul recorded his 70th career game with at least 30 points, but first since Jan. 26 at New Orleans. It also was his first 30-point game against the Nets, and the point guard added 11 assists and seven rebounds.
Carmelo Anthony put the Rockets ahead for good with about seven minutes left in the third quarter by hitting consecutive 3-pointers and added a season-best 28 points. He also hit consecutive 3-pointers with about five minutes remaining in the fourth to stem a Nets run and give Houston a 106-102 lead.
Clint Capela dominated inside with 22 points and 13 rebounds as the Rockets outscored the Nets 76-54 over the final 27:11. Eric Gordon contributed 21 points as the Rockets shot 49.4 per cent from the field.
The Rockets played their third straight game without James Harden (strained left hamstring). Harden worked out on the court before the opening tip and coach Mike D'Antoni said he would probably play Saturday in Chicago.
Caris LeVert scored a career-high 29 points for the Nets, who also shot 49.4 per cent while losing for the fourth time in five games. Joe Harris added 18 while Spencer Dinwiddie contributed 12, though he committed a 24-second violation during a 3-point attempt that would have brought the Nets within 111-107 with 71 seconds left.
The Nets had a chance when Harris hit a 3-pointer over Anthony with 40.6 seconds left to make it 113-109. Anthony hit two free throws on the next possession but Dinwiddie clanked a 3-pointer off the front of the rim and Gordon hit two at the line with 21 seconds to ice it.
(With inputs from agencies.)