HOUSTON (AP) -- Dwight Howard scored 18 of his 25 points in the fourth quarter, including 13 of 19 free throws in a 2 1/2-minute stretch, and the Houston Rockets beat the Denver Nuggets 122-111 on Saturday night.
Chandler Parsons added 20 points for Houston and James Harden had 17 for the Rockets, who never trailed and led by as many as 23.
The Nuggets tried to get back in it with about 5 1/2 minutes left by using the "Hack-a-Howard" defense, intentionally fouling the center every time Houston had the ball.
The plan backfired and Howard, who entered the game shooting 49 percent from the line, finished 17 of 24 on free throws.
Ty Lawson had 28 points and a career-high 17 assists to lead Denver.