Virtuoso Harden, Westbrook efforts go in vain
LOS ANGELES, USA – James Harden exploded for 57 points but could not prevent the Houston Rockets stumbling to a shock 125-126 overtime defeat to the Memphis Grizzlies in the NBA on Wednesday, March 20 (Thursday, March 21, Manila time).
Harden's half-century led the scoring but Memphis grabbed victory courtesy of 35 points from Mike Conley and 33 points from Jonas Valanciunas.
It was a similar story in Oklahoma City, where Russell Westbrook delivered a virtuoso display which ultimately proved to be in vain as the Thunder fell 123-114 in overtime to the Toronto Raptors.
Westbrook finished with 42 points, 11 rebounds and 8 assists while Paul George had 19 points.
The Raptors however got over the line after an all-round offensive effort that saw all 5 starters make double figures.
Pascal Siakam led the scoring for Toronto with 33 points with support from Fred VanVleet (23) and Kawhi Leonard (22).
The Raptors kept hold of the 2nd spot in the East with a 51-21 record, behind league-best 53-19 card of the Milwaukee Bucks.
The Rockets held on to 3rd with a 45-27 slate, while the Thunder remained locked in a three-way tie from 6th to 8th with the San Antonio Spurs and the Los Angeles Clippers at 42-30 in the West.