Houston Rockets star James Harden turned in an absolutely absurd statline against the Utah Jazz Sunday night, scoring a career-high 56 points on just 25 shots while dishing out 13 assists.
Harden went 19 of 25 from the field, including 7 of 8 from 3-point range, in 35 minutes. In total, Harden scored or assisted on 91 of his team’s 137 points.
“I was just shooting it, I don’t know,” Harden said after the game. “I don’t really pay too much attention to it. I just try to take good shots and, like I said, pretty much make the right decision. … I’ve just got to be aggressive.”
Harden came up just short of Calvin Murphy’s Rockets’ franchise record of 57 points, which was set in March 1978, before leaving the game for good with 7:32 left in the fourth quarter. The Rockets beat the Jazz 137-110.
The Jazz came into the night boasting one of the league’s top defenses, allowing an average of 96 points and holding opponents to 44.2 percent from the field.
Harden started the game hot, dropping a league-best 30 points in the opening half, just one point short of his career high for a first half.
Sunday’s effort was Harden’s sixth 50-plus point performance and the third game in which he tallied over 50 points and 10 assists, tying him with Russell Westbrook for most in the past 30 seasons.