The San Antonio Spurs did enough to spoil James Harden’s 40-point outing by outlasting the Houston Rockets, 128-114, in NBA preseason at the AT&T Center in Houston.
LaMarcus Aldrige and Dejounte Murray joined forces to led San Antonio with DeMar Derozan sitting out.
The reliable forward had a team-high of 22 points along with six rebounds while the returning Murray finished with 20 points, three assists and four rebounds.
Head coach Greg Popovich and his Spurs squad displayed their well-oiled machine offense as they shot the ball 57 percent compared to only 43 by the Rockets.
They led the entire game with Marco Belinelli and Jakob Poeltl providing the support with 15 and 16 points respectively.
Eric Gordon tried to answer back with his early hot shooting before Harden followed with his offensive outburst. San Antonio, however, remained on track of their game plan to protect the lead until the final buzzer.
Harden flirted for a triple-double with 40 points, seven rebounds and 10 assists in a losing effort. Meanwhile, his counterpart, Russell Westbrook, added 14 points, four rebounds, and four assists as Gordon chipped 14 markers as well.