Deadly storms leave fans, Howard stranded in Toyota Center


Good thing the Houston Rockets finally gave their fans a win against the Golden State Warriors on Monday night. They had to spend a lot of time together after the game thanks to Mother Nature.

Nearly two-and-a-half hours after Houston staved off elimination with a 128-115 Game 4 victory over the Warriors, as the calendar turned to Tuesday, several hundred fans – and center Dwight Howard — remained sheltered in the Toyota Center gathering in the lower bowl section, unable to leave because of severe thunderstorms pounding the Houston area.

"I can’t go nowhere, so I’m with the fans," said Howard, whose route home was flooded.

Four people have been confirmed killed by storms and flooding in the state, with another 12 missing. More than 1,000 homes have been damaged or destroyed and more than 2,000 people forced to leave their homes in the state, The AP reported.

The storms have impacted much of the Central United States, and a tornado in Ciudad Acuna just south of the U.S.-Mexico border in Texas on Monday killed 13 people with at least five more unaccounted for.

Back on the court, watching The Weather Channel on the Toyota Center’s huge video boards hanging over the court, Howard said he wouldn’t have his night any other way after the big win.

"The weather is pretty bad out, but this is a great place to be, the fans and everybody here," Howard said "I feel like I’m at home."

Howard had 14 points and 12 rebounds in game five. He said he was glad his team took the win as the vibes in the Rockets home court would have dim for him and the fans stuck in the arena if Houston would have been eliminated.

"No doubt, it would have been ugly if we would have lost tonight and we’d had to stay in the arena," Howard joked. "We’re thankful we got a good win tonight. We got to keep believing. We’re going to go up there to Oakland and we’re going to fight, so we’re excited about that."

Follow Shawn Ramsey on Twitter: @ShawnPRamsey


Predicting awards and winners of the 2015 MLB season

Ranking NFL quarterback salaries

21 Fun Facts about the NCAA tournament

Highest paid player of each NBA team

College football’s highest paid coaches in 2014

Highest paid player on every MLB roster