CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Rockets coach Kevin McHale says center Dwight Howard will be back in the starting lineup when Houston takes on the Charlotte Bobcats.

McHale said before Monday night s game that Howard is a go, unless he experiences a setback during warm-ups.

Howard has missed the last three games - all Houston wins - with a strained left ankle. The Rockets (47-22) were on a three-game losing streak when Howard injured his ankle on March 16.

Howard is averaging 18.6 points and 12.4 rebounds per game this season.

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