Kurt Helin

Houston Rockets guard James Harden (13) drives between Memphis Grizzlies guard Tony Allen, left, and forward Jeff Green (32) in the first half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2016, in Memphis, Tenn. (AP Photo/Brandon Dill)
Associated Press

Harden scores 25 to lead Rockets past Grizzlies, 107-91

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — James Harden scored 25 points, Dwight Howard added 17 points and 14 rebounds and the Houston Rockets beat the Memphis Grizzlies 107-91 on Tuesday night.

Terrence Jones finished with 20 points for Houston, 10 in the fourth quarter when the Rockets pulled away to win their fourth straight.

The Rockets broke open an 83-all game to eventually lead by 18 down the stretch as Memphis managed only eight points after the teams were deadlocked.

Marcus Thornton had 16 points, and Trevor Ariza finished with 10.

Marc Gasol led Memphis with 20 points, while Tony Allen added 17. Courtney Lee finished with 16 and Mario Chalmers, Zach Randolph and Vince Carter all scored 10.

The Rockets connected on 18 of 35 from outside the arc compared to only 7 of 18 for Memphis. Houston dominated the boards 42-31, including 18 from the offensive glass. That led to a 28-12 advantage in second-chance points.

Memphis, which trailed by as many as 13 in the first half, opened the second half with a 13-2 rally to erase a 9-point halftime deficit.

The Grizzlies couldn’t maintain the advantage as the Rockets controlled the boards, especially the offensive glass. By the end of the third, Houston was outrebounding Memphis 32-21, including 15 offensive rebounds leading to 23 second-chance points through three quarters.

Carter tied the game at 83 on a 3-point play with 7:35 remaining. But the Memphis offense stalled as Jones and Howard carried the Rockets offense.

Houston used 3-point shooting in the first half to take a 51-44 lead into intermission. Thornton gave the Rockets a boost off the bench, hitting three of four shots, including a pair from outside the arc. Thornton had 11 in the half, while Harden and Ariza scored 10 each.

Howard was already on the verge of his double-double with eight points and eight rebounds.

Gasol and Lee scored 10 each in the half for Memphis. Lee’s included a 3-pointer as the horn sounded to cut the Rockets lead to single digits at the break.

TIP-INS:

Rockets: Howard recorded his 17th double-double of the season. .Houston had lost the first two games in the season series. .Rockets G Ty Lawson did not play, serving the last game of a three-game suspension by the league. .Howard took only 13 shots in the first two games between the two teams this season. He took 10 Tuesday night and converted all five of his free throws, including four as the Rockets pulled away.

Grizzlies: Memphis played without starting G Mike Conley, who missed his fourth straight game with sore left Achilles, and F Matt Barnes, who sat out his first with a right thumb injury. .Randolph moved past Larry Bird (8,974) into 50th place on the all-time rebounding list in the third quarter.

 

Carmelo Anthony steps on referee’s foot, rolls ankle, leaves game

New York Knicks' Carmelo Anthony (7) smiles during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Miami Heat, Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2016, in Miami. The Knicks defeated the Heat 98-90. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky)
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It was a fluke play.

Carmelo Anthony was running back upcourt, watching the play behind him, and crashed into a referee, stepping on his foot. ‘Melo rolled his ankle.

Anthony laid on the court for a couple of minutes when it happened, but it was right before half so he went to the locker room. The Knicks said that he was getting his ankle retaped and would be out to start the second half.

That lasted all of 19 seconds.

He asked out of the game at that point and soon went back to the locker room again. This time he was not returning to play against Boston.

His status for the Knicks’ Wednesday game against the Nets is unclear at present.

Reports: John Wall leaving agent to join Rich Paul (LeBron’s agent)

Washington Wizards' John Wall leaves the court at after his team's 91-94 loss to Toronto Raptors in an NBA basketball game in Toronto on Wednesday, Dec. 30, 2015. (Chris Young/The Canadian Press via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT
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John Wall is a free agent. Not on the court — he’s locked in for three more seasons after this one with the Wizards.

Not on the court — he’s locked in for three more seasons after this one with the Wizards.

But he is a shoe contract free agent. His deal with Adidas expired before the start of this season, and his agent had been negotiating a new one. It’s taken a while with no results.

Now Rich Paul — the agent and friend of LeBron James who also represents Tristan Thompson, Eric Bledsoe and others — apparently is going to take over those talks. Multiple reports have Wall dropping his current agent, Dan Fegan, for Paul. Here is the Washington Post’s report.

Washington Wizards point guard John Wall has fired agent Dan Fegan and his team of representatives at Relativity Sports and plans to hire Rich Paul of Klutch Sports, according to two people with knowledge of the situation. Wall has to wait 15 days after notifying Fegan before officially signing with Paul.

Wall denied that any new agent has been chosen, but confirmed Fegan is out.

This is all about the shoes. Wall had an Adidas deal but for much of this season has worn LeBron Nikes. That and the jump to Paul would suggest the change in shoe brands will be permanent.

This isn’t going to be immediate, but expect Wall to have a new shoe deal not long after he formally changes agents.

Reports: Warriors expected to rest Draymond Green a couple games

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Golden State has a back-to-back coming up this week: Wednesday night at the altitude in Denver, then Thursday night at home — where the Warriors have yet to lose this season — against the Los Angeles Lakers. Two easily winnable games for Golden State.

But it looks like they will have to do it without Draymond Green. While nothing is official yet, expect Green to get some time off. From Marcus Thompson at the Mercury News.

He’s been playing through discomfort in both lower extremities, producing on both ends and paying the price after games. Monday, he had 22 points, 12 rebounds and six assists in the 111-103 win over the Miami Heat. And even during the game, you could see him laboring for stretches. In blowout games, he spends the fourth quarter with his legs wrapped in enough ice to look like he’s wearing hockey pads.

The problem is, Green doesn’t want to rest. His mother has been on his case for a while. Much like point guard Stephen Curry, he has to be forced sit down. And according to a team source, that’s probably going to happen soon.

Then this from Rusty Simmons of the San Francisco Chronicle.

Green has been putting up monster numbers of late and has fans backing him as an All-Star starter as of the last vote count. Not that it matters much to the Warriors when it comes to resting guys.

There will be more of this from the Warriors as they move they move into the dog days of the season. Sure, 73 wins would be nice, but now is not the time to focus on that. What matters when trying to build an NBA legacy is rings, and you don’t need the studies that exist to know guys who are tired and physically worn down are more prone to injury. The Warriors goal is June, and that means resting guys in January.

Besides, the Warriors should be fine against the Nuggets and Lakers even without Green (although Denver has played Golden State tough this season).

Expect Green to sit out a little this week. He’s not going to be happy about it, but it appears it is going to happen.

Report: Denver Nuggets to sign Sean Kilpatrick to 10-day contract

New Orleans Pelicans Sean Kilpatrick (25) passes the ball to Eric Gordon (10) during NBA training camp in White Sulphur Springs, W.Va., Wednesday, Sept. 30, 2015. (AP Photo/Chris Tilley)
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Sean Kilpatrick played in four NBA games for the Minnesota Timberwolves last season while on a 10-day contract. The most notable part of that stint was how he got the job in the first place — he was in New York when the shorthanded Timberwolves were in the city and desperately needed a guard. Location, location, location.

This preseason Kilpatrick went to camp with the Pelicans but couldn’t make the cut (on a team with a lot of injured guards), so he went back to the D-League. Now the Denver Nuggets will give him a look, reports Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports.

Kilpatrick could flat-out score coming out of Cincinnati, and he averaged 18.2 points a game at Summer League, but at the NBA level he’s been unable to continue that kind of success (he shot 30.8 percent from three in his time with the Timberwolves last season). This season in the D-League he’s averaged 27.1 points per game and shot 44 percent from three, so he’s getting another chance.

Kilpatrick doesn’t play great defense (although he competes), meaning unless he’s can start to bring some of that scoring touch to the NBA it’s hard to find minutes for him.