James Harden said winning was the only thing on his mind as the Rockets star finished with a flourish against the Mavericks to extend his streak of scoring at least 30 points to 30 consecutive games.
The reigning NBA MVP was in danger of falling short of the milestone, but finished with 31 after scoring 11 in under two minutes late in the final quarter Monday in Houston.
Harden was hampered by a sore shoulder but played through the pain in the Rockets’ 120-104 victory.
“I was worried about winning,” Harden told reporters. “They were making shots. They were coming back, cut the lead to 10 or nine points, something like that.
“So I just wanted to get the proper shots. They put two on the ball and I got off it a few times and we got some good opportunities.”
— Houston Rockets (@HoustonRockets) February 12, 2019
He added: “I couldn’t get the lift that I usually have for my shot, but that’s no excuse. I’m just happy we won the game.”
Rockets coach Mike D’Antoni isn’t concerned about the health of Harden, who also had eight rebounds and seven assists.
“If he comes to the arena, he’s playing,” D’Antoni said. “I can’t keep him out of practice, much less playing. He loves to play and he knows his body. He can go through this. He’s fine.”