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Lakers Win Consecutive Games for First Time This Year

Lakers Win Consecutive Games for First Time This Year

Chris Graythen/Getty Images(HOUSTON) -- For the first time in the 2014-15 season, the Los Angeles Lakers won consecutive games with a 98-92 win over the Houston Rockets on Wednesday night. Kobe Bryant led the way with 29 points, seven assists, and five rebounds for the Lakers (3-9).

"Look, we had a bad start," Bryant said. "Are we a 3-9 team? No. We're a much better team than that. We got off to a really bad start, but we'll (get better)."

Trailing by four with less than a minute to play, Los Angeles used a 7-1 run to take a 94-92 lead and pick up the victory. Nick Young scored 16 points in just his second game of the season, scoring 17 in Tuesday night's win. Young added a pair of free throws late to seal the win.

The Rockets (9-3) were playing without center Dwight Howard who missed the game with a knee injury. James Harden paced Houston with 24 points while three other players scored in double figures. Despite shooting 15-of-38 from beyond the arc, the Rockets turned the ball over 17 times and were out-rebounded 47-38 in the loss.

It was the first meeting between the Western Conference foes after Houston's opening night win in Los Angeles. That contest featured a small spat between Howard and Bryant, heightening the drama going into Wednesday's game. 

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Team USA Rolls to FIBA World Cup Gold

Team USA Rolls to FIBA World Cup Gold

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images(MADRID) -- Team USA dominated from the start and repeated as World Champion for the first time, defeating Serbia 129-92 in the FIBA World Cup gold medal game on Sunday.

Kyrie Irving was named Tournament MVP and scored 26 points in the final contest. Irving made all six of his three-point attempts, while the team went 15-for-30 from distance.

"Obviously we didn't have a very close game all tournament, but for that to happen we had to play hard for 40 minutes and not relax and not give any inch while we were out there," guard Stephen Curry said.

In total, the U.S. shot 58-percent from the floor in another blowout. The Americans dominated the tournament, posting an average margin of victory of 32.5 points per game. What made the performance more impressive is that it came without the likes of LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, or Kevin Durant. James Harden added 23 points for Team USA as eight different players scored in double figures.

Team USA has now won 63 consecutive games and qualified for the 2016 Olympics in Brazil.

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Team USA Advances to FIBA Semifinals

Team USA Advances to FIBA Semifinals

Ronald Martinez/Getty Images(BARCELONA, Spain) -- James Harden scored all 14 of his points in the second half while Klay Thompson added 20 points, helping the United States pull away from Slovenia in a 119-76 win in the quarterfinals of the FIBA World Cup on Tuesday.

The game was not as easy as the final score suggests, however. Team USA only led 49-42 at the half, with Slovenia closing the gap to as close as five in the third quarter. However, the Americans would reel off a 27-10 run before scoring the first 10 points of the fourth quarter to make it a 96-64 contest.

"We just stick to the program. We know it's tough for any team to run with us for 40 minutes because of how deep we are and how hard we work on the floor," said Stephen Curry. "I think we understand we didn't make many shots in the first half but our defense was pretty solid, and if we kept the pressure on them, things would open up."

Team USA shot just 36 percent in the first half, but finished the game at 50 percent, thanks in large part to Thompson's 20 points. The US will play Lithuania on Thursday in the semifinals.

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Paul George Suffers Serious Leg Injury

Paul George Suffers Serious Leg Injury

NBA via Indiana Pacers(LAS VEGAS) -- Indiana Pacers forward Paul George suffered what appeared to be a serious right leg injury in the fourth quarter of the Team USA intrasquad scrimmage in Las Vegas Friday night. 

George was running after James Harden, who was on the other team, when his leg buckled prompting him to slide into the base behind the basket. 

After the play everyone immediately stopped in shock and awe as it appeared George had broken his leg just above his ankle. Coach Mike Krzyzewski, medics and members of George's family hurried to his side. 

George was treated on the court and had his leg put in an air cast before being taken off in a stretcher to a thundering applause.

The game was stopped after the incident.

"This is a very tough blow," USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo said. "It's a first for us in USA basketball to have something like this take place. It's a tough situation for our entire organization, our coaches and players and very, very emotional. There's no way the game could have gone on under the circumstances."

George is being treat at the Hospital for Special Surgery in Las Vegas.

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Chandler Parsons and James Harden Exchange Words

Chandler Parsons and James Harden Exchange Words

Christian Petersen/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The Houston Rockets and Dallas Mavericks may have a rivalry brewing between then after Rockets guard James Harden said the team will be just fine without forward Chandler Parsons, who's heading to the Mavericks.

"Dwight [Howard] and I are the cornerstones of the Rockets," Harden told The Philippine Star. "The rest of the guys are role players or pieces that complete our team. We've lost some pieces and added some pieces."

"I think we'll be fine next season," he added.

Parsons spent the first three seasons of his career with the Rockets and was one of the team's best players. Still, he wound up signing a three-year, $46 million contract with the Mavericks that the Rockets decided not to match.

In responding to Harden's comments, Parsons proclaimed that Harden's attitude was one of the reasons why he left the team, adding that he wants to be considered an important member of a winning team.

This past season, Parsons averaged 16.6 points and 5.5 rebounds per game.

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Trail Blazers Knock Off Rockets in OT, Take 3-1 Series Lead

Trail Blazers Knock Off Rockets in OT, Take 3-1 Series LeadSteve Dykes/Getty Images(PORTLAND, Ore.) -- LaMarcus Aldridge had 29 points and 10 rebounds to help lift the Portland Trail Blazers over the Houston Rockets 123-120 in overtime Sunday; Portland took a 3-1 lead in the best-of-seven first-round playoff s...

Aldridge Torches Rockets, Portland Takes 2-0 Series Lead

Aldridge Torches Rockets, Portland Takes 2-0 Series LeadScott Halleran/Getty Images (HOUSTON, Texas) -- For the second time is as many games, LaMarcus Aldridge set it off. The Portland power forward scored 43 points on Wednesday for the second straight game, leading the Trail Blazers to a 112-105 win over H...

Harden Scores 28 as Rockets Blow by Spurs 111-98

Harden Scores 28 as Rockets Blow by Spurs 111-98Ronald Martinez/Getty Images(SAN ANTONIO) --  James Harden scored 28 points to lead the Houston Rockets over the San Antonio Spurs 111-98 on Wednesday. Dwight Howard added 15 points and 20 rebounds for the Rockets, (19-11) who moved within 3 1/2 g...

Rockets Bump Knicks 109-106

Rockets Bump Knicks 109-106Christopher Trotman/Getty Images(NEW YORK) --  James Harden scored 36 points as the Houston Rockets outlasted the New York Knicks 109-106 on Thursday night at Madison Square Garden. Jeremy Lin scored 21 points in his return to New York for the Roc...

Sixers Stun Rockets 123-117 in Overtime

Sixers Stun Rockets 123-117 in OvertimeRonald Martinez/Getty Images(PHILADELPHIA) -- James Anderson scored a career-high 36 points, Tony Wroten added a triple-double, and the Philadelphia 76ers stunned the Houston Rockets 123-117 on Wednesday night. Playing in place of injured rookie Michae...

Sources: Rockets Hopeful They Can Land Dwight Howard

Sources: Rockets Hopeful They Can Land Dwight HowardNBA Via Los Angeles Lakers (NEW YORK) --  The Houston Rockets believe they have a real chance to land Dwight Howard in free agency. Sources close to the process told ESPN.com that the Rockets have received what has been described as "hopeful sign...

Rockets Stay Alive, Beat Thunder 107-100

Rockets Stay Alive, Beat Thunder 107-100Al Bello/Getty Images(OKLAHOMA CITY) -- The flu didn't mess up James Harden's game. Harden, who missed the morning shootaround due to sickness, scored a team high 31 points, and hit 7 of 9 from 3-point land leading the Houston Rockets past the Oklahoma...

Rockets Clip Thunder 105-103 for First Win of Series

Rockets Clip Thunder 105-103 for First Win of SeriesBob Levey/Getty Images(HOUSTON) --  The Houston Rockets avoided elimination with a 105-103 win over the Oklahoma City Thunder Monday night. Chandler Parsons scored 29 points, while Patrick Beverly added 16 to help the Rockets avoid a four-game swe...

Durant and Westbrook Lead Thunder Past Rockets

Durant and Westbrook Lead Thunder Past Rockets Christian Petersen/Getty Images(OKLAHOMA CITY) -- Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant each had 29 points leading the Oklahoma City Thunder past the Houston Rockets 105-102 Wednesday night. The win gives the Thunder a 2-0 lead in their best-of-seven...

Durant, Thunder Take Care of Rockets 120-91

Durant, Thunder Take Care of Rockets 120-91Christian Petersen/Getty Images(OKLAHOMA CITY) --  Playing against a former teammate in the postseason is not an easy thing, but Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook managed to get it done. Durant scored 24 points, Westbrook finished two assists shy...

Rockets Tie NBA Record in Rout of Warriors

Rockets Tie NBA Record in Rout of WarriorsChristopher Trotman/Getty Images(HOUSTON, TX) --  Houston doesn't have a problem...making threes. The Rockets tied an NBA record and set a franchise mark with 23 made three-pointers in a 140-109 thrashing of the Golden State Warriors. Jeremy Lin m...

Clippers Top Rockets Without Paul

Clippers Top Rockets Without PaulNational Basketball Association(HOUSTON) -- The Los Angeles Clippers were without point guard Chris Paul for the second straight game and for the second straight night, that didn't seem to bother them. Jamal Crawford had a season-high 30 points to lead...

Rockets Crush the Bulls, 120-97

Rockets Crush the Bulls, 120-97Brett Deering/Getty Images(CHICAGO) -- This was hardly the kind of game Bulls' fans were hoping to see on Christmas. The Houston Rockets came into Chicago and crushed the Bulls, 120-97.The Bulls trailed by just five after the first quarter, but it was ...

Rockets Win In Lin’s Garden Return

Rockets Win In Lin’s Garden ReturnElsa/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Jeremy Lin made sure his return to New York was triumphant one. Lin had 22 points and eight assists against his former team, and the Houston Rockets defeated the New York Knicks 109-96 at Madison Square Garden on Monday n...

Spurs Survive Rockets in OT

Spurs Survive Rockets in OTNational Basketball Association(HOUSTON) -- It took an extra period, but the San Antonio Spurs finally overcame the Houston Rockets on Monday night.  Tony Parker logged his first career triple-double, Gary Neal added a career-best 29 and the Spurs...
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