HOUSTON – My look at some of the best and worst performances from the Houston Rockets 120-98 victory over the 76ers on Thursday night at the Toyota Center:
Best performance: It would be insane to not give this award to James Harden. The Rockets shooting guard finished with 26 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists to finish with the second triple-double of his career. Not bad considering the 6-foot-5, 220-pounder sat out the fourth quarter. But before he rested, Harden did whatever he wanted to do against the Sixers. He made three-pointers, step-back jumpers and layups. He scored 10 points each in the first and third quarters.
Worst performance: This was a tough one. But in the end, I had to give this to Brandon Davies. Yes, I know that the Sixers reserve forward was tied for second on the team with six rebounds. But he struggled from the field, missing all three of his shots while finishing with two points after making 2 of 4 foul shots. The rookie out of Brigham Young also committed a turnover in 11 minutes, 10 seconds of action.
Best defensive performance: This was another tough one. But I’m giving it to Dwight Howard. The Rockets center finished with a game-high three blocked shots and two steals in 26:10 of action. The 6-11, 265-pounder also had 17 points and 13 rebounds – 10 defensive – despite sitting out the fourth quarter.
Best performance in a losing effort: James Anderson wins this award after producing another solid performance against the team that waived him in July. The Sixers shooting guard finished with a game-high 30 points on 11-for-18 shooting. He made 6 of 11 three-point attempts. Back on Nov. 13, Anderson scored 36 points in a 123-117 overtime victory against the Rockets at the Wells Fargo Center.
Worst statistic: This award goes to the Sixers being outrebounded 57-39.
Best statistics: You have to give this to the Rockets’ 13 steals, which marked the 19th time they racked up 10-plus steals.
Worst of the Worst: This goes to the Sixers’ 26-game losing streak to tie an NBA futility record. Everyone knows the team in tanking this season. But it’s hard to imagine that the Sixers wanted to lose 26 straight games.
Contact and follow Inquirer 76ers beat writer Keith Pompey on Twitter @PompeyOnSixers.