Jae’Sean Tate scored a career-high 32 points to lead the visiting Houston Rockets rallied for a 114-110 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday.
The Rockets extended their winning streak to four immediately following a 15-game losing streak. The Thunder have lost seven consecutive games and nine of 10.
The Thunder led by 11 with less than eight minutes to go before the Rockets scored 12 consecutive points to take their first lead of the game on Tate’s free throws with five minutes to play.
Oklahoma City missed six consecutive shots to let Houston back in the game.
Tate scored 13 of his points in the fourth quarter, while Armoni Brooks had 10 of his 18 off the bench in the final frame as the Rockets outscored the Thunder 41-29 in the fourth.
Tate, who was 11 of 15 from the floor, hadn’t scored more than 25 in his career before Wednesday. He added 10 rebounds, seven assists and a career-high five blocks.
Houston’s comeback spoiled the big night for Oklahoma City’s Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, who scored a season-high 39 points on 12-of-26 shooting. He was just 1 of 8 from behind the 3-point arc but 14 of 16 on free throws.
Luguentz Dort added 19 for the Thunder.
While Gilgeous-Alexander scored 11 points in the fourth, he was just 3 of 9 from the floor, missing all three 3-point attempts he tried down the stretch.
Gilgeous-Alexander had the ball with the Thunder down by three with less than 20 seconds left, but he missed a pullup jumper. The Rockets converted one of two free throws on the other end, and Oklahoma City didn’t get another chance to tie or take the lead.
The Thunder led by as much as 15 in the second quarter before the Rockets slowly started their comeback.
Houston lost a pair of starters early when point guard Kevin Porter Jr. left with a left thigh contusion and center Christian Wood, coming off two of the best games of his career, exited with a right ankle sprain.
Both players briefly returned after their injuries, but neither played in the second half.
Oklahoma City was without Josh Giddey and Derrick Favors due to non-COVID illness while Mike Muscala (right ankle soreness) and Kenrich Williams (right ankle sprain) also sat out.
–Field Level Media