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D'Antoni on Harden's recent shooting struggles: That's the least of my worries

By Opta
James Harden

LA, February 28: Houston Rockets coach Mike D'Antoni is unworried about James Harden's recent shooting struggles.

Harden did not have his best game on Wednesday, but he did just enough to lead the Rockets to a win.

The 29-year-old star missed 19 of his 29 shots and connected on only one of his 11 three-point attempts.

Harden, however, finished with 30 points, including 19 in the second half, in Houston's 118-113 victory over the Hornets in Charlotte.

"He'll be fine," D'Antoni said. "That's the least of my worries is how he's going to play. He's going to be good."

Harden also added seven assists, two steals and was a perfect nine of nine from the free throw line.

"Luckily, I'm able to do more things than just score the basketball," Harden told reporters after the game. "On the nights where the ball's not going in, I'm able to get to the foul line, I'm able to create steals, I'm able to assist the basketball. I'm able to do the intangible things, take charges to help the team win."

Harden has been dealing with a neck injury and sat out the team's match-up with the Golden State Warriors on Saturday. He returned two days later and shot just 33.3 per cent from the floor in Houston's win over the Atlanta Hawks.

The Rockets trailed the Hornets by four at the end of the third quarter but opened the final period on an 18-4 run to take control.

"We did a really good job defensively and just being more aggressive," Harden said about Houston's fourth quarter.

Houston improved to 36-25 with the victory and have now won three of their last four games. They finished play on Wednesday in fifth place of the Western Conference with a 36-25 record.

Harden, the 2018 NBA MVP, is averaging 36.2 points and 7.6 assists this season. He is shooting 43.8 per cent from the field and 36.3 per cent from three-point range.

The Rockets will host the Miami Heat on Thursday.

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Story first published: Thursday, February 28, 2019, 11:40 [IST]
Other articles published on Feb 28, 2019
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