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by: Kris Gardner, United States Basketball Writers Association member. Credentialed media member since 1997. USBWA approved online journalist. Voter of Katrina McClain, Naismith, USBWA, and Wooden awards.
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Rockets mash Mavs, 133-108
POSTED: January 24, 2021 -- 10:32 a.m. CT
DALLAS, TX (American Airlines Center) -- The Houston Rockets mashed the Dallas Mavericks 133-108 Saturday night behind 33 points from Eric Gordon and a dominating performance from DeMarcus Cousins. Cousins produced 28 points, 17 rebounds, and 5 assists in 29 minutes and 48 seconds of game action.
Cousins' performance was a welcome sight (and relief) to himself, his teammates, coaches, and Rockets' fans. After a 2 for 16 field goal shooting performance Friday night against Detroit, Cousins made 9 of his 15 field goal attempts, including 4 for 8 from three point range, to help Houston win its second straight ball game.
Cousins and Gordon set the tone in the first quarter. Cousins had 9 points and 8 rebounds in 9 first quarter minutes while Gordon scored 11 points.
Houston shot 60.9% (14 for 23) in the opening quarter and outscored Dallas 38-27 in the period.
Houston (6-9) led Dallas 70-59 at halftime.
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Dallas (8-8) began the third quarter with a 12-4 spurt to trim Houston's lead to 74-71 with 7:51 remaining in the third quarter. The Mavs would get no closer as Cousins sank a three-pointer to push the lead to 6. Then after a bucket by Dallas guard Trey Burke, Eric Gordon split two free throws before scoring a reverse a layup. Next, Cousins nailed another three-point shot to put Houston up 83-73 with 5:15 left in the third quarter.
The Rockets poured it on the rest of the quarter with a 21-10 run to lead 104-83 at the end of the third quarter.
Cousins (26) and Gordon (29) combined for 55 of the 104 points through three quarters.
The Rockets' youngsters: Mason Jones (6 points); KJ Martin (6 points); Brodric Thomas (5 points); and Rodions Kurucs (2 points) got extended minutes in the fourth quarter and helped win the final period 29-25.
Houston point guard John Wall, after being out of the lineup the last 5 games, returned to action Saturday night against the Mavs and had 7 points and 8 assists in 20 minutes.
The Rockets next game is scheduled for Tuesday, January 26, at home, versus the Washington Wizards, at 7 p.m. Central Time.
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