At this point in James Harden’s absurd season, a 27-point first quarter is not all that shocking on its own. The dude has already logged 57 or more points five times in 2019, and the Rockets’ offense is weirdly at its most effective when Harden gets to step back across the three-point line to his heart’s content. He shoots, a lot, always.
Tonight against the Spurs, he followed up his first-quarter takeover (where he outscored San Antonio by himself) with a game-closing explosion that was somehow even more impressive. The Rockets trailed by six with four minutes left. Two-and-a-half minutes later, they were coasting to a win thanks to a 13-point outburst, all from Harden. San Antonio threw aggressive double teams at Harden in the third and fourth quarters, but when it mattered most, he got loose. Check out these back-to-back-to-back threes that basically ended it.
Harden’s 61 tied a career- and season-high, and even though the Rockets only have nine games left, he’ll definitely shoot enough to get a chance to top it.