Harden and Leonard clash in Houston-Los Angeles matchup
Los Angeles Clippers (42-19, second in the Western Conference) vs. Houston Rockets (39-21, fourth in the Western Conference)
Houston; Thursday, 8 p.m. EST
BOTTOM LINE: Two of the NBA’s best scorers, James Harden and Kawhi Leonard, meet when Houston and Los Angeles take the court. Harden leads the NBA averaging 34.9 points per game and Leonard is eighth in the league averaging 27.0 points per game.
The Rockets have gone 24-16 against Western Conference teams. Houston averages 118.9 points and has outscored opponents by 4.6 points per game.
The Clippers are 25-13 against Western Conference opponents. Los Angeles is third in the league with 36.9 defensive rebounds per game led by Leonard averaging 6.5.
The Rockets won the last meeting between these two squads 122-117 on Dec. 19. Russell Westbrook scored 40 points to help lead Houston to the win.
TOP PERFORMERS: Harden leads the Rockets with 4.6 made 3-pointers and averages 34.9 points while shooting 35.8 percent from beyond the arc. Westbrook has averaged 26.9 points and collected 6.1 rebounds while shooting 44.7 percent over the last 10 games for Houston.
Leonard leads the Clippers averaging 27 points and has added 7.5 rebounds and 5.1 assists per game. Lou Williams has averaged 17.7 points and 3.4 rebounds while shooting 46.7 percent over the last 10 games for Los Angeles.
LAST 10 GAMES: Rockets: 7-3, averaging 119.3 points, 39.4 rebounds, 20.8 assists, 9.8 steals and 5.9 blocks per game while shooting 46.5 percent from the field. Their opponents have averaged 113.1 points on 46.5 percent shooting.
Clippers: 6-4, averaging 119 points, 45.9 rebounds, 25 assists, 6.9 steals and 4.9 blocks per game while shooting 48.2 percent from the field. Their opponents have averaged 111.3 points on 44.5 percent shooting.
INJURIES: Rockets: None listed.
Clippers: None listed.