A 360 layup by John Wall. A halfcourt shot by Danuel House Jr. The Houston Rockets ended the first half of Monday’s game against the Toronto Raptors with one of their most entertaining offensive possessions of the season. Houston’s electric play to close out the second quarter resulted in the Rockets securing a 117-99 victory over the Raptors.
With the win, the Rockets ended a franchise-worst 20 game losing streak — their first victory since Feb. 4 in Memphis. While picking up a home victory, the Rockets also recorded their first win inside the Toyota Center since Jan. 28 against the Portland Trail Blazers.
Wall ended the night with 19 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists, his first triple-double since February of 2016 as a member of the Washington Wizards.
Twenty-four hours after Christian Wood criticized the team for not playing together, Houston’s 18-point victory over the Raptors was a joint effort. All five starters scored in double-figures with Jae’Sean Tate leading the way with a team-best 22 points (8-9 FG, 3-4 3PT). Wood ended the night with 19 points (8-15 FG, 2-4 3PT) — all coming in the second half.
John Wall had himself a triple-double night!— Houston Rockets (@HoustonRockets) March 23, 2021
Sterling Brown got things going early for the Rockets to open the game. Brown started the night connecting on his first five shots from the field —three of which coming from behind the arc — while scoring 13 of the Rockets’ first 15 points. He would end the game with 19 total points.
Brown’s hot start kept the Rockets close despite trailing 28-27 after the first quarter. But what helped the Rockets take a five-point lead into halftime was their 3-point shooting.
Houston shot 61.5 percent from deep in the second period to take a lead they never surrendered. While they were clicking on all cylinders offensively, the Rockets played one of their best defensives halves of the season. Houston forced the Raptors into committing 10 turnovers in which they converted into 17 points.
The closest the Raptors got to ending a losing streak of their own came late in the third quarter. Toronto closed the third period on a 13-2 run to cut Houston’s lead down to 88-86 entering the fourth quarter.
The Raptors, who now holds the league’s longest losing streak at nine, were led by Fred VanVleet. He scored a game-high 27 points, while Pascal Siakam added in a double-double of 21 points and 10 rebounds in the loss.
After ending the NBA’s ninth longest losing streak in history, the Rockets will look to make it two consecutive wins on Wednesday against the 21-21 Charlotte Hornets. Tip-off is slated for 7:00 P.M. CT inside the Toyota Center.