NBA: Harden’s triple-double fuels Brooklyn past Spurs

Field Level Media/Reuters

Posted at Jan 22 2022 01:04 PM

Brooklyn guard James Harden shoots against Spurs center Jakob Poeltl in their game on January 21, 2022. Daniel Dunn, USA Today Sports/Reuters
Brooklyn guard James Harden shoots against Spurs center Jakob Poeltl in their game on January 21, 2022. Daniel Dunn, USA Today Sports/Reuters

James Harden scored 37 points, dished out 11 assists and grabbed 10 rebounds and the visiting Brooklyn Nets turned it on in the 4th quarter to defeat the San Antonio Spurs 117-102 on Friday.

The Nets led by 5 points at the end of the 3rd quarter after a late run and continued that momentum into the 4th, steadily pulling away over the final 8 minutes. Brooklyn went up 107-94 after 12 combined points over a 3-minute stretch by Kyrie Irving, who finished with 24 points, and Harden.

Brooklyn led by as many as 17 in the final minutes.

LaMarcus Aldridge added 16 points off the bench for the Nets in his 1st return to San Antonio since he was released by the Spurs last season. Blake Griffin hit for 10 points and Day'Ron Sharpe grabbed 10 rebounds for Brooklyn, which has won 2 straight games.

Dejounte Murray led the Spurs with 25 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists to record his 2nd consecutive triple-double and his 9th this season, tied with the Los Angeles Lakers' Russell Westbrook for 2nd in the NBA behind the Denver Nuggets' Nikola Jokic (10).

Derrick White added 17 points and 7 assists for San Antonio, with Jakob Poeltl recording 15 points and 11 rebounds and Keldon Johnson scoring 14 points. The Spurs shot just 38.9 percent from the floor and were 8 of 29 (27.6 percent) from 3-point range in the loss.

The Spurs led 26-24 after a 1st quarter that was mostly dominated by Brooklyn. There were 6 lead changes in the 2nd period, with San Antonio settling for a 51-50 advantage at the break.

Harden led the Nets with 14 points at halftime while Murray scored 13 to pace the Spurs in an even, if raggedly played, first 24 minutes.

The 3rd quarter was back and forth as well, with 7 lead changes and neither going in front by more than 5 points. The Nets ended the period with a 6-0 run, punctuated by dunks by Aldridge and Bruce Brown, and were up 79-74 heading to the final 12 minutes of play.