The Houston Rockets seem to be gaining momentum once again.
If it wasn't for their controversial double-overtime loss to the San Antonio Spurs, today's 115-109 win over the Phoenix Suns could have been their fifth consecutive after they lost three straight before Thanksgiving.
On the other hand, the Suns continue to be inconsistent after a positive 7-4 start to the season.
Here's a look at the biggest takeaways from this home win over the Suns:
Harden, Russ take over in the 4th
Heading into the fourth quarter, the Rockets led the Suns by five points and the hosts kept the visitors at bay behind the superstar duo in the final period.
James Harden and Russell Westbrook scored 28 of the team's 32 fourth-quarter points for the team's fourth win in the last five games. In fact, over a five-minutes period, Harden outscored the Suns 17-10 when he scored 17 straight points for the Rockets.
That 👌 caps off 15 straight points for The Beard 😳#OneMission pic.twitter.com/VRQKrOgMCr- NBA TV (@NBATV) December 8, 2019
Harden scored 18 of his 34 points in the final quarter while also recording six rebounds, four assists, and three steals on a rough 8-of-27 (29.6%) shooting game. On the other hand, Russell Westbrook recorded his third straight triple-double, finishing with 24 points, 14 rebounds, and 11 assists.
2nd straight big game for Ben McLemore
Against the Suns, Ben McLemore proved that his performance in Toronto against the defending champions was no flash in the pan.
He dropped 28 while knocking down eight 3-pointers against the Raptors. Today, against the Suns, he backed that up with a 27-point performancce which included seven 3-pointers.
.@BenMcLemore's last 2 games 🔥- Houston Rockets (@HoustonRockets) December 8, 2019
✔️ 55pts and 13 3s combined in 2 wins pic.twitter.com/hQ8HcfOjIN
The 26-year old has come off the bench in all of the Rockets' 22 games. In the season so far, he has recorded five 20+ point performance and three of those have come in the last four games.
Booker shines again but gets no support
After dropping 44 a couple of days back, Devin Booker dropped an efficient 35 (11-19 FG's) against the Rockets but didn't receive much support.
The Suns had four other players who finished in double figures with Kelly Oubre Jr. leading the way with 19 points.
However, their key starters had a rough shooting night - Oubre Jr. (7-18 FG's; 1-6 3P), Ricky Rubio (5-16 FG's). Rubio, Oubre Jr. and Mikal Bridges combined for 10 of the team's 15 turnovers while Booker only committed one turnover in 37 minutes on the court.
The Suns have gone 3-8 in their 11 games after a hot start. They have a chance to get their record back around .500 with a few winnable games (including playing the San Antonio Spurs in Mexico City) coming up before they face the LA Clippers in ten days.