We will have four more Round One games tomorrow, starting with the Celtics-Cavaliers game at 3 PM Eastern Time. Catch live coverage of that one right here at VAVEL USA.
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Houston also had 9 blocked shots!
Houston shot 45% from the field; Dallas shot 44%. The Rockets had 4 less turnovers, and while they had 5 less rebounds, they made for some great ball movement and a 7-assist advantage in the passing column.
Tyson Chandler had a double-double of 11 points and 18 rebounds. Chandler Parsons and Amare Stoudemire each had 10.
Dirk Nowitzki led Dallas with 24 points and 8 rebounds. Monta Ellis had 16 points, Rajon Rondo added 15, and JJ Barea added 12 off the bench.
James Harden leads with 24 points, 11 assists, and 15-17 from the line. Terrence Jones had 19 points, 9 assists, and 6 assists. Jason Terry hit 4 threes en route to 16 points. Corey Brewer had 15, and Trevor Ariza also had a big day, with 12 points, 11 boards, and 6 assists. 11 for both Howard and Smith.
4th Quarter (0.0) THIS ONE IS OVER! ROCKETS BY 10, 118-108!
4th Quarter (16.5) James Harden hits two more from the charity stripe. 118-108.
4th Quarter (19.9) Barea hits inside. 116-108.
4th Quarter (28.2) 116-106.
4th Quarter (28.2) James Harden hits two free throws as the crowd chants "M-V-P! M-V-P!".
4th Quarter (33.9) Villanueva hits one more three! 114-106.
4th Quarter (43.5) Corey Brewer splits a pair of free throws. 114-103.
4th Quarter (45.8) Charlie Villanueva knocks down a triple. 113-103.
4th Quarter (51.2) Jones hits 2 more.
This is over, as long as The Houston Rockets don't have a monumental collapse and give this up with a minute to go.
4th Quarter (1:05) Jones back to the line. Misses a pair.
4th Quarter (1:41) Dirk with a putback. 111-100.
4th Quarter (2:11) Monta at the line. Knocks down 1 of 2 frees.
4th Quarter (2:15) Terrence Jones splits two free throws. 111-97.
7 Rockets are in double-digits scoring.
Houston has powered their way to this victory. This one is all but over.
Dallas has no momentum or connection on offense. They are missing every shot, they are not in mutual understanding, and on defense, they couldn't be giving up easier shots.
TIMEOUT. 110-97 Houston.
4th Quarter (2:37) Barea breaks the drought and hits inside. 110-97.
4th Quarter (3:03) Harden gets fouled. At the line, The Beard splits the couple of frees. 110-95
4th Quarter (3:20) Brewer converts the free throw. 109-95.
4th Quarter (3:20) Corey Brewer AND ONE! 108 (maybe 109) - 95, Houston is off to the races.
4th Quarter (4:08) Dallas Mavericks get fouled in return. Houston with some sass, and the fans love it!
4th Quarter (4:09) Here we go. Hack-a-Smith. Josh Smith hits one free throw.
4th Quarter (4:14) Parsons hits a layup.
4th Quarter (4:27) Terrence Jones hits 2 free throws. 105-93 Rockets.
4th Quarter (4:54) Corey Brewer hits his THIRD THREE! 103-93 Houston Rockets!
4th Quarter (5:24) Tyson Chandler cleans up for Barea, hits inside.
4th Quarter (5:50) Parsons hits at the rim. 100-91.
Houston is rolling. Dallas is scoring, but not defending, and the Rockets are just doing whatever they want to. 11-point game right now, doesn't look like the deficit will go away anytime soon for the Dallas Mavericks.
4th Quarter (6:10) Brewer another three! 100-89! TIMEOUT DALLAS!
4th Quarter (6:38) Terrence Jones hits a couple of shots from the stripe. 97-89.
4th Quarter (6:52) Rondo with a layup. 95-89.
4th Quarter (7:03) Howard picks up foul #5.
4th Quarter (7:15) Prigioni and Barea trade jumpers. 95-87.
4th Quarter (7:39) Another jumper. Rajon Rondo!
4th Quarter (8:00) Corey Brewer for three at the buzzer! 93-83!
4th Quarter (8:29) Jumper by Dirk.
4th Quarter (9:16) Ariza hits the three before the shot clock-buzzer. 91-81.
4th Quarter (9:51) Dwight Howard with the reverse lay-in! 88-81 Rockets.
4th Quarter (10:54) Stoudemire to the line. Amare sinks both.
4th Quarter (11:10) Trevor Ariza hits a couple of free throws to take back a 7-point lead. 86-79.
4th Quarter (11:30) Nowitzki assists on a Monta Ellis layup. 84-79.
Dirk Nowitzki and James Harden are leading their teams in scoring. Dirk with 20, Harden with 19.
Maybe that three will transfer the momentum to Dallas and give them the inspiration and momentum to take back the game and eliminate this deficit.
3rd Quarter (0.0) MONTA ELLIS WITH A CRAZY BUZZER-BEATING THREE! STEPBACK, FADEAWAY, FIRE! 84-77 after three.
3rd Quarter (31.6) Dirk Nowitzki is fouled on a tip-in attempt. He hits two shots from the stripe. 84-74 Houston over Dallas.
3rd Quarter (1:40) Stoudemire hits a turnaround jumper.
3rd Quarter (2:08) More second-chance points. Josh Smith with a putback! 84-70 Houston Rockets!
3rd Quarter (3:02) Capela with a putback of his own missed alley-oop. 82-70
Just like in the first quarter, Houston is enforcing fast-paced basketball, and Dallas cannot handle it, turning the ball over and surrending too many easy buckets. This 10-point lead will only grow if play continues identically.
3rd Quarter (3:19) Timeout. 80-70 Houston Rockets vs. Dallas Mavericks.
3rd Quarter (4:16) Al-Farouq Aminu with a Dallas putback! 80-70.
3rd Quarter (4:49) Stoudemire hits the baby hook inside. 80-68.
3rd Quarter (6:04) Clint Capela throws down the alley-oop after a Nowitzki layup. 80-66 Rockets.
3rd Quarter (6:35) Nowitzki gives it away for the Harden layup.
3rd Quarter (7:02) Terry and Chandler trade twos. 76-64 Houston!
3rd Quarter (7:36) Harden hits the free throw following a techical foul by Dallas coach Rick Carlisle.
For Dallas, if they continue to play inefficiently, there is NO WAY they can win this game 1 of this Western Conference Round One NBA Playoffs series.
Houston is rolling with the crowd and momentum, now back to a 10-point lead.
The Mavericks just aren't equipped yet to power past the Rockets.
Dallas looks just as they did to start the game. No rhythm, giving up easy buckets.
3rd Quarter (7:38) James Harden! Hits a transition layup! Timeout Dallas! 16 points for the MVP candidate, 72-62 Houston Rockets - Dallas Mavericks.
3rd Quarter (8:59) Jason Terry for three! 70-62 Houston!
3rd Quarter (9:27) Monta for three.
3rd Quarter (9:44) Harden hits 2 free throws.
3rd Quarter (10:03) Dirk converts from the stripe. 65-59.
3rd Quarter (10:03) DIRK NOWITZKI hits the AND-ONE THREE!
3rd Quarter (10:37) Howard AGAIN inside. Timeout Mavs. 65-55.
3rd Quarter (11:02) Dwight with an alley-oop slam! 63-55.
3rd Quarter (11:31) Terrence Jones starts the second half with a layup. 61-55 Rockets.
Hopefully for Dallas, Chandler Parsons is alright after exiting amidst the second quarter action.
Trevor Ariza has quietly recorded 8 points, 6 rebounds, and 6 assists.
Dallas NEEDS to keep attacking the Houston bigs inside on both ends of the court. On offense, they can draw fouls and score easy layups with Dwight Howard in foul trouble. On defense, the Houston big men have shot abysmally from the free throw line.
Rondo looks to be back in his legendary playoff form. 11 points, all in quarter #2.
Free throw shooting: Dallas 80%, Houston 63%
In the rebounding category, Dallas leads 22-18. The Rockets still are shooting better from the field, with 54% conversion on field goals. Dallas is shooting 46%.
Houston now has 11 turnovers. Dallas has 9.
Dirk Nowitzki and James Harden each have 12 for their respective teams. Rondo has 11 for the Mavs, and T-Jones and Jason Terry each have 10 for Houston.
2nd Quarter (0.0) Villanueva misses a three to end the half.
2nd Quarter (9.0) Ariza bounces through a three!
2nd Quarter (30.1) James Harden hits two more shots from the stripe.
2nd Quarter (33.4) Rondo hits ANOTHER LAYUP!
2nd Quarter (43.9) James Harden nails his pair of free throws. Chandler Parsons has returned to action.
2nd Quarter (43.9) Harden with a steal. Dirk fouls James for his third foul.
2nd Quarter (57.0) Jones again inside!
2nd Quarter (1:13) Chandler with another tip-in!
2nd Quarter (1:30) Jones with a layup.
2nd Quarter (1:45) RONDO again with a jumper!
2nd Quarter (2:12) Rajon Rondo hits a corner three! 49-48 Mavs!
2nd Quarter (2:40) Ariza hits both, and Houston gets possession.
2nd Quarter (2:40) The Jefferson foul is called a flagrant 1.
This is turning into a barnburner of a battle.
2nd Quarter (2:40) Jefferson fouls Ariza on the fastbreak. Timeout. 46-46.
2nd Quarter (2:58) Nowitzki and Jones trade jumpers.
2nd Quarter (3:30) Smith hits.
2nd Quarter (3:44) Nowitzki is hot! Hits a fadeaway shot.
2nd Quarter (4:00) Terence Jones AND ONE! Misses the free.
2nd Quarter (4:14) Rajon Rondo makes a nifty reverse layup. Dallas leads!
2nd Quarter (4:44) Nowitzki banks in a pullup jumper! TIE GAME, 40-40.
2nd Quarter (5:09) Dirk hits a running hook shot!
2nd Quarter (5:29) Chandler throws down the alley-oop from Rondo.
2nd Quarter (5:40) Jason Terry hits another deep three!
2nd Quarter (6:05) Chandler follows Rondo's miss. 37-34 game.
Chandler Parsons has left towards the locker room.
Finally, the Dallas Mavericks have taken the advantage and are now within 5 of the Rockets. Houston has forced too many alley-oops and tough shots inside, but is still playing extremely well. This'll be a good one folks.
TIMEOUT on the floor.
2nd Quarter (6:40) Rondo sinks a J. 37-32 Rockets!
2nd Quarter (7:26) Parsons dunks inside! 37-30!
2nd Quarter (7:34) Josh Smith finishes the lob from Harden!
2nd Quarter (7:45) Ariza and Parsons called for double technicals. Tyson Chandler at the line hits one of two.
2nd Quarter (8:23) Parsons drives and scores.
Barea has been a nice spark coming off the bench.
Finally. Here come the Mavs.
2nd Quarter (8:53) Timeout Houston. 35-25 Rockets.
2nd Quarter (9:22) Josh Smith hits a layup.
2nd Quarter (9:36) JJ Barea! A difficult floater goes.
2nd Quarter (9:56) Stoudemire nails both at the line.
2nd Quarter (9:56) Dwight Howard picks up his THIRD FOUL of the game. Stoudemire to line, Howard to the sideline.
2nd Quarter (10:25) JJ Barea hits the wide open transition layup. 33-21 Houston.
2nd Quarter (10:49) Smith to Howard for another failed alley-oop on Houston's offensive end.
2nd Quarter (11:16) Stoudemire is called for a foul on a failed alley-oop attempt. Dwight misses one of two at the stripe.
2nd Quarter (11:49) Bad pass turnover to start the quarter for the Mavs.
The Rockets are poor, poor shooters from the free throw line. Today, they are 5-10 from the stripe, and if the Dallas Mavericks continue to hack the Houston big men, they may be able to slow the game down and cut the deficit to a much closer score.
Harden has 8 points for Houston.
Dallas is playing HORRENDOUSLY right now. They are 7-23 to start the contest, while Houston is shooting 12-19.
1st Quarter (0.0) Stoudemire misses a layup at the buzzer. 32-19 Houston Rockets over the Dallas Mavericks after one.
1st Quarter (32.8) JJ Barea hits a bank shot jumper in the lane. Two for one for the Mavs.
1st Quarter (54.4) Capela hits the second of two free throws at the line.
1st Quarter (54.4) Clint Capela is fouled. We are starting the intentional hacking game against the weak Houston free throw shooting squad.
1st Quarter (1:12) Harden drills one of two frees. 31-17 Houston.
1st Quarter (1:12) James Harden draws a foul! To the line he goes!
1st Quarter (1:42) Smith misses a couple of shots from the charity stripe.
1st Quarter (2:14) Josh Smith nails a post shot.
1st Quarter (2:30) As we return to action, Monta Ellis splits a pair of free throws.
Houston is just making nearly every one of their shots, while Dallas is just playing sloppy offense leading to their giveaways and the Rockets' fastbreak scoring.
Both teams have 5 turnovers each.
1st Quarter (2:51) Brewer with a fastbreak layup through heavy defense! 28-16 Houston Rockets!
1st Quarter (3:12) Harden jams in the lane!
1st Quarter (3:26) Capela is called for two fouls on pne possession. Amare Stoudemire nails a pair of free throws.
1st Quarter (3:55) Offensive boards pay off as Dirk Nowitzki scores his first bucket off of a 3rd-chance tip-in.
1st Quarter (4:26) James Harden at the stripe. Knocks down a pair.
1st Quarter (4:36) Ellis drives and scores for Dallas.
1st Quarter (4:55) Capela on the backdoor cut! Layup good. 22-10 Rockets!
1st Quarter (5:13) Clint Capela at the line. Misses first, hits the second. 20-10 Rockets on top.
1st Quarter (5:25) Devin Harris hits the layup inside for Dallas!
Parsons just scored his first points of the game on that dunk. Nice way to start his return.
1st Quarter (5:52) Chandler Parsons! WOW! Throwdown on the break! 19-8 Houston.
All there is to say: Houston Rockets are on fire.
1st Quarter (6:15) JASON TERRY! HOUSTON WITH ANOTHER STEAL AND KICK OUT! Terry drains the long two! TIMEOUT DALLAS!
1st Quarter (6:39) Jason Terry with ANOTHER HOUSTON TRIFECTA! 17-6 Rockets!
1st Quarter (6:54) At the line, Monta Ellis hits a pair to cut the deficit to 8. 14-6 Rockets.
1st Quarter (7:07) After a Howard block, Trevor Ariza hits a monster three! 14-4 Houston Rockets - Dallas Mavericks.
1st Quarter (7:28) Terrence Jones converts the alley-oop! 11-4 Houston!
1st Quarter (7:41) Dallas Mavericks finally end the drought. Monta Ellis hits a pullup jumper!
1st Quarter (8:09) Dwight Howard swats Tyson Chandler's shot attempt in the paint!
Houston is all smiles right now.
Dwight Howard has 4, Terry has 2, and Harden has 3.
After a few missed shots, everything is clicking for the Houston Rockets not just on offense, but also defending the Dallas Mavericks. 9-2 start is the result.
2-9 Dallas Mavericks - Houston Rockets
1st Quarter (8:31) Jason Terry! Steal for the easy bucket! 9-0 run for Houston! Timeout Dallas!
1st Quarter (9:03) James Harden buries the three off a steal to take a 7-2 Houston lead!
1st Quarter (9:45) Harden to Howard on the alley-oop! 4-2 Houston!
1st Quarter (10:08) Dwight Howard with the jam inside from Ariza!
1st Quarter (10:30) Houston has missed 3 straight possessions.
1st Quarter (10:54) Dirk Nowitzki knocks down an elbow jumper to start the scoring off for both sides. 2-0 Dallas Mavericks - Houston Rockets.
Neither team scores on their first possession.
Howard and Chandler on the tip. Houston controls.
Terry, Harden, Ariza, Jones and Howard are the starting 5 for the Houston Rockets tonight.
Rondo, Ellis, Parsons, Nowitzki, and Chandler to start for the Dallas Mavericks.
HERE WE GO! Starters are taking the court in Houston!
This Dallas Mavericks - Houston Rockets matchup is the final playoff matchup of the day.
Chandler Parsons should be on the court tonight, returning to his former team, the Houston Rockets.
It's just about gametime!!!
Game is over between the Bulls and Bucks. 103-91 is the final score of that contest. Now on to the Mavs and Rockets on ESPN!
103-91 now in Chicago. Less than 30 seconds to go.
Dallas Mavericks - Houston Rockets live Tipoff should be in less than 15 minutes.
A bit of inter-state bragging rights in this 2-7 seed battle.
It will be interesting to see how the distance between the two teams (both are in Texas) affects the homecourt advantage for Houston.
This Dallas-Houston game tips off at 9:30 PM ET. Game 1 of this round one series in the Western Conference.
Chicago is now up 91-79 with 8 minutes remaining.
The Bulls and Bucks are duking it out right now on ESPN. Chicago is up currently in the third quarter.
Also, in game 2 of Saturday's 4-game slate, #8 seeded New Orleans took on the Western Conference favorites and #1 seeds, the Golden State Warriors. The Warriors were dominating for most of the game, but the Pelicans made a late run to close the gap to single digits. The Stephen Curry-led Warriors prevailed eventually, by a score of 106-99.
In some other NBA news, the Washington Wizards defeated the Toronto Raptors in the playoffs' first game today. Washington goes up now 1-0 in the series.
Speaking of Howard, he is likely to be hacked purposely if the Mavericks feel the need to do so. Josh Smith is also a Hack-A-Shaq victim since he is another poor free-throw shooter. Rick Carlisle and the Mavericks will not be hesitant to use that strategy to grind out games. It's up to the Rockets bigs to knock down free throws to eliminate the strategy.
Check out our other LIVE event, covering the Milwaukee Bucks against the Chicago Bulls.
With Howard back into Houston's lineup, Dallas' rebounding has to be much better. Tyson Chandler, Mavericks' defensive anchor and elite rebounder, will have to keep a body on Howard to keep him off the glass in this Dallas Mavericks - Houston Rockets live game.
In the last meeting on April 2nd, James Harden put in 24 points, six assists, and four rebounds to go with five turnovers on 6 of 15 shooting t0 lead Houston to a 108-101 victory. Dirk Nowitzki notched 21 points and seven rebounds on 7 of 11 shooting, but Houston's rebounding hurt the Mavericks in that game as they out-rebounded Dallas, 55-41, and 17-9 on the offensive glass. Here is VAVEL USA's recap of what happened.
Parsons is a major component for Dallas. He is probably their best defensive option on James Harden as he could use his versatility and length to disrupt Harden as much as possible. Harden averaged 24.8 points, 5.8 assists, and 6.0 rebounds on 44 percent shooting in four games against the Mavericks this season.
Fortunately for the Mavericks, Chandler Parsons (knee) is expected to play in this Dallas Mavericks - Houston Rockets live game. He missed the final six games of the season with an ailing knee issue and could be rather rusty to start this series. Devin Harris (toe) is the other key Mavericks player dealing with an injury. He is deemed questionable for this contest. However, luckily Dallas has plenty of backcourt depth to compensate for his probable absence.
Both teams have injuries to key players. As we know, the Rockets will be without defensive ace Patrick Beverley and big man shooter Donatas Motiejunas. Beverley's absence did not hurt Houston much during the season, but it could effect them slighthly during the playoffs. The Rockets will crave his defensive prowess, especially going up against the likes of Rajon Rondo and Monta Ellis. Without Motiejunas, the Rockets bench is slightly thinner in the frontcourt, as they will have to rely heavily on rookie Clint Capela or Joey Dorsey as Dwight Howard's backup.
The Houston Rockets won the season series, 3-1, but as we all know, the playoffs are different. The Mavericks hung in close in all three losses and won the one game by 11 points. Dallas also closed the season on a positive note, winning the last four out of five games. The one loss came to the Utah Jazz when they rested their starters. The Rockets finished the season on a good note as well, winning six out of the last eight.
If that does not stir up emotions going into the series, then I don't know what will. What's more is that, of course, these two teams have been Texas rivals for quite some time now.
"[The biggest difference is] practice time. There's no more predictable team than the Rockets. You know exactly what they're gonna do. But James Harden is so good. That's what analytics have begot. Right? Predictability. If you know what the percentages are, in the playoffs, you have time to counter them. Whether you're good enough to do it is another question. Because they are very talented, and James Harden, I think, is the MVP. Because that's not a very good team over there," Cuban said.
Secondly, Mark Cuban, who is always in the middle of some good, old-fashioned trash talking, had a mouthful to say about this Rockets team.
There are some juicy storylines coming into the series. First, Chandler Parsons will be back in Houston, playing against his former team and in front of his former home crowd. When Parsons left, there were some brutal words exchanged between James Harden and the Rockets and Parsons.
Hello, NBA world. Welcome to VAVEL_USA's Live event of the Dallas Mavericks vs Houston Rockets live Game 1 from the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas.