James Harden makes history. This line has been repeatedly thrown up at various points in the NBA this season. While Dallas Mavericks star Luka Doncic has been grabbing headlines in recent weeks, it was only fitting that Rockets superstar James Harden served a timely reminder of his record-breaking abilities against Orlando Magic at the Amway Center on Friday night (Saturday morning IST).
James Harden (54 PTS) is on a mission.— NBA on TNT (@NBAonTNT) December 14, 2019
Back-to-back 50+ point | 10+ 3PM games for The Beard 🤯 pic.twitter.com/62sVLtWAOi
The Rockets vs Magic game was anything but a dull affair. But then again, few NBA games are dull when James Harden is on the court. With 54 points on 19-of-31 shooting, seven assists and five rebounds, James Harden was clearly the star of the show as the Houston Rockets registered a 130-107 win over Orlando Magic. This was the Rockets' 17th win in the NBA this season. However, that number pales in comparison to James Harden's individual effort on the night.
This was the Rockets star's second straight 50-point (10-three pointer game) after the 55-point display against the Cleveland Cavaliers earlier this week. But that's not all. James Harden is now the first NBA player to record back-to-back 50-point games with 10+ three-pointers made. Only four players have made 10+ 3-pointers two or more times in their careers. James Harden did it in back-to-back games. He also owns the record for most 50-point games on the road. The Rockets superstar is now averaging a massive 39.3 points per game. To provide some context, Lakers legend Kobe Bryant averaged 35.4 points per game during the season he scored 81 points against the Toronto Raptors.
The Rockets' next game will see them face off against a Detroit Pistons side languishing at 10th in the NBA's Eastern Conference. With James Harden averaging over 39 points per game, the Pistons will have to be doubly wary of the Rockets. There have been multiple instances wherein the Rockets' opposition have taken to crowd out James Harden. However, the seven-time NBA All-Star has proven notoriously hard to stymie.