Harden's big first propels Rockets over Sixers 115-88

HOUSTON (AP) - James Harden scored 23 of his 33 points in the first quarter, and the Houston Rockets cruised to a 115-88 win over the Philadelphia 76ers on Monday night.

Harden, who posted a triple-double in his last two games, added nine assists and seven rebounds.

The Rockets had a three-point lead with five minutes left in the first quarter when Harden took over, scoring all of Houston's points in a 17-9 run to make it 35-24. Harden, who was named Western Conference Player of the Week on Monday, made a pair of 3s, all three shots after being fouled on a 3-pointer and a nifty reverse layup in that span.

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