HOUSTON, TX—The Los Angeles Clippers failed to overcome the absence of their two leading scorers, losing 140-116 to the Houston Rockets on Friday, December 30.
Raymond Felton led the Clippers with 26 points, five rebounds and eight assists off the bench. Deandre Jordan had 20 points and 13 rebounds. Wesley Johnson and Alan Anderson contributed 10 points each.
The Clippers were without all-stars Blake Griffin (knee) and Chris Paul (hamstring), who sat out due to their injuries.
Austin Rivers scored nine points for Los Angeles before getting ejected from the game in the second quarter after he appeared to lightly shove a referee after missing a layup. Rivers’ father, Clippers head coach Doc Rivers, was also ejected after reportedly confronting the officials about his son’s ejection.
Both Austin and Doc Rivers were ejected from a game against the Washington Wizards on December 18. Coach Rivers has been ejected four times this season.
James Harden recorded his seventh triple-double of the season with 30 points, 13 rebounds and 10 assists for the Rockets, who have won three straight games. Montrezl Harrell had 29 points, three rebounds and three assists. Eric Gordon added 19 points off the bench while Trevor Ariza contributed 18 points, four rebounds and seven assists.
Houston has won 8 of their last 10 games, advancing to 25-9 overall and third place in the Western Conference. The Rockets will host the New York Knicks in their next matchup on Saturday, December 31.
The Clippers have lost five consecutive games, falling to 22-13 on the season and fourth place in the Western Conference. Los Angeles will travel to Oklahoma City for a game against the Thunder on Saturday, December 31.