HOUSTON (CBS HOUSTON) – The Rockets bounced back in a big way on Monday night, beating the Pacers 110-98.

The final score was not indicative of the nature of the game, as the Rockets took a 20-point lead into the fourth and coasted for the win.

This game coincided with James Harden returning to his typical MVP-candidate form. The Beard had 30 points already by the end of the third quarter. He finished with 45 points, seven assists, and four steals on 12-18 shooting, including 6-10 from long distance.

It was that third quarter where the Rockets really took charge. Up by 10 at the half, 55-45, Harden started the third quarter scoring 17 points on a perfect 5-of-5 shooting performance. Harden wound up missing his final two shots of the third, but he did swish a halfcourt heave that was just after the third quarter buzzer had sounded.

By then, the Rockets had doubled their lead to 88-68 and were well on their way to a bounceback win after falling 131-106 to Golden State on Saturday. This marked the fifth straight loss for the Pacers.

Dwight Howard added 14 points and 17 rebounds in the winning effort. C.J. Miles had 23 points with six rebounds and five steals to lead the Pacers.

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