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Rockets turned season around since Harden's scoring streak began

Yahoo! Sports logo Yahoo! Sports 1/20/2019 Kaleel Weatherly

a basketball player during a game: James Harden is on another MVP tear. (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images) © Provided by Oath Inc. James Harden is on another MVP tear. (Photo by Tim Warner/Getty Images)

Stop me if you heard this comment concerning James Harden recently: Harden is putting on a scoring clinic. Indeed, the reigning NBA MVP has scored at least 30 points over the last 19 games — averaging 42.5 points over that span. But no one seems to be talking about the Houston Rockets as a whole. Right now, this team sits atop of the Western Conference at 26-19. 

Since Harden started this eye-popping offensive onslaught against the Los Angeles Lakers in December, the Rockets won 14 of their last 19 games. After Harden scored 48 points to help Houston knock off the Lakers Saturday, he told ESPN’s Lisa Salters that he’s “trying to do whatever it takes to rack up as many wins as we can … I’m just being me. A little bit more aggressive. Shots are falling. That’s it.” Harden only trails NBA legend Wilt Chamberlain in consecutive 30-point games. In fact, he’s scored 163 unassisted points over the past three games.

But what’s interesting about Harden’s offensive barrages is that he’s also getting other players involved, too. Harden is averaging 8.9 assists over this 19-game stretch, and he currently sits fourth in assists this season at 8.5. He has a penchant for getting other players in the mix, which is another key reason why the Rockets are dominating right now.

Players like Clint Capela, PJ Tucker, and Austin Rivers are stepping up in big ways — and as long as Harden continues to keep them involved, Houston could find itself competing for an NBA Championship.

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Related slideshow: 2018-19 NBA season (provided by USA Today Sports)

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