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Harden scores career-high 53 points in triple-double explosion

USA Today Sports

Battling a number of injuries, the New York Knicks were simply no match for James Harden and the Houston Rockets on Saturday night.

The 6-foot-5 guard exploded for the best offensive performance of his career, finishing with a career-high 53 points, 17 assists, and 16 rebounds in the 129-122 victory. He's now the first player in league history with at least 50 points, 15 rebounds, and 15 assists in a single contest.

Harden also tied Wilt Chamberlain for the most points in a triple-double performance.

While Harden managed to score in a number of ways, he was particularly hot from deep, finishing with a career-high nine 3-pointers.

With averages of 26.8 points, 11.7 assists, and 8.6 rebounds in December, Harden has made a strong case for Player of the Month honors, and is right in the thick of the MVP race.

After a slow start to the season, the Rockets have been red-hot under Harden's leadership, going 15-2 during the last month of play.

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