Cha 19 20 22 22 83
Hou 17 28 22 29 96
Date of game: 10/30/2013

Recap: Houston vs. Charlotte

Houston, TX (SportsNetwork.com) - Dwight Howard showed why he was the most coveted free agent of this past offseason, matching a career high with 26 rebounds in his Houston debut to help the Rockets to a 96-83 season-opening victory over the Charlotte Bobcats at the Toyota Center.

Howard, who inked a four-year, $88 million contract with the Rockets in July after a prolonged courtship by several suitors, added 17 points in his first game with his new team. James Harden totaled 21 points in the win, with Francisco Garcia tallying 19 and fellow reserve Jeremy Lin scoring 16 for Houston.

Behind Howard's efforts and a 14-rebound performance from counterpart big man Omer Asik, the Rockets dominated Charlotte on the glass to the tune of a 54-37 advantage.

"For our team to get out and run we've got to clean the boards and not give teams second chances," Howard said. "We just have to try to hold them to one shot every possession and that way we can get out and run. Our defense was pretty solid tonight."

Josh McRoberts paced the Bobcats with 15 points and Ramon Sessions had 14 in the loss. Al Jefferson, Charlotte's major free-agent pickup over the summer, finished with 13 points and eight rebounds while playing through a sprained ankle.

"I was a little rusty and I most definitely am not in game shape and I missed a lot of shots I would normally make," Jefferson admitted. "I haven't played in two and a half weeks, but it was just good to get back out there."

Houston's season of high expectations got off to a rocky start, as the rebuilding Bobcats scored the game's first six points and led for much of the opening quarter as the Rockets shot just 30 percent (6-for-20) for the period.

The contest remained a tight one for much of the second quarter before Houston began to assert itself over the last six minutes of the frame.

Harden had the first four points of an 11-0 run that staked the Rockets to a 38-29 lead with four minutes left in the half. Shortly afterward, Garcia drained one of his five baskets from 3-point range to put Houston up by a 41-31 count.

Charlotte managed to close the gap to 45-39 at intermission, with Kemba Walker notching all 12 of his points prior to the break, and the deficit was cut to one when McRoberts knocked down a triple with 5:19 left in the third quarter for a 57-56 game.

Though the Bobcats stayed within striking distance for a good portion of the second half, Houston finally started to pull away in the final quarter. The Rockets strung together an 11-2 burst, highlighted by Howard's thunderous alley-oop jam off a Harden give, to extend the margin to 80-68 with under six minutes to play.

Houston maintained a double-digit lead the rest of the way, with Harden pouring in 13 points on 5-of-5 shooting during the fourth quarter.

Game Notes

Charlotte shot just 36.7 percent from the field for the game, but committed just eight turnovers to the Rockets' 19 ... The Rockets have now prevailed in six straight meetings in the series, with the Bobcats having lost nine straight in Houston since a 101-100 overtime decision at the Toyota Center on Dec. 18, 2004 ... Bobcats rookie Cody Zeller, the fourth overall pick in this past June's draft, had just two points on 1-of-6 shooting in his NBA debut ... Guard Ben Gordon did not play for Charlotte due to a right knee injury that sidelined him for much of the preseason, while forward Terrence Jones (shoulder) sat out for Houston.

Texas QB Ash out against BYU

Texas starting quarterback David Ash will not play in Saturday's game against BYU after sustaining a concussion in last weekend's season opener.

NASCAR News
Kyle Busch Motorsports drivers hit Canada

The series will run its 14th race of the season on Sunday at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park. This will be the second time the series competes in Canada. One year ago, Chase Elliott won the inaugural truck race at this 2.459-mile, 10-turn road course. Wallace finished fourth.

Royals activate Hosmer

The Kansas City Royals will get their first baseman back for the season's stretch run, as the club reinstated Eric Hosmer from the 15-day disabled list as rosters expanded on Monday.

USA tested by Turkey in World Cup prelim

Kenneth Faried scored 22 points on 11- of-14 shooting and the United States pulled away down the stretch for a 98-77 win over Turkey on Day 2 of the 2014 FIBA World Cup.

Latest Sports Photos
Latest Sports Photos
0 Votes
a skydiver was injured when attempting to land in a pre game show at the Lookouts opening game on 4/3/2014

0 Votes
SEC Champions Alabama created by artist Ben Teeter S/N C.O.A. available for the dedicated Alabama fan!

1 Vote
first catch of the season looks like a good year

0 Votes
Gina McLeroy Spring City, TN

0 Votes
Our Son Brandon McLeroy MTSU Football 2011 Gina McLeroy Spring City TN

1 Vote
this is James Howard telling Gracie what to do.

0 Votes
Riverbend fun!

0 Votes
I nees a four letter word for the outside layer of a tree.

0 Votes
Cameron is a rising athlete. He has a God given talent for the game of football. This picture is of him stopping the ball carrier in our game in the ...

1 Vote
Our Lookout Valley 9/10 year old team went to a tournament in Knoxville called The Battle of the Rocky Top. They went throught the tournament undefeated and won the championship ...
Featured Partners
www.eastridgeretirementcenter.com
The newly modeled East Ridge Residence is a must see with its spacious comfortable apartments. Plus, 3 delicious meals daily, geriatric physician, home healthcare services and fun festive activities. Schedule your visit today!
www.ameripriseadvisors.com/james.m.scotchie
Together we can make a confident retirement possible. Simply click to get started with your private wealth advisor. Talk to Jimmy Scotchie, Certified Financial Planner.
www.comcast.com/cable-internet-packages.html
Get started at $79.99 a month for 12 months. Plus, get a $75 VISA® Prepaid card.
 
Supermarket Guru
From The Archives
Scenic City Roots
Through Irish Eyes
Brand News
Prime Mashup
What's Trending
Megan Wise Goes Outside
Stay Connected with WDEF News 12
 
Inergize Digital This site is hosted and managed by Inergize Digital.