Rockets Rally for Number 21

McGrady, Houston overcome early cold spell
By Mike Buss,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 15, 2008 2:01 AM CDT
Houston Rockets' Luis Scola (4), is fouled by Charlotte Bobcats' Emeka Okafor, right, during the first quarter of NBA action on Friday, March 14, 2008, in Houston.    (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
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(Newser) – Maybe Houston got caught looking ahead to its Western Conference showdown this Sunday with the Lakers. Fortunately for them, it didn't last, as the Rockets got back to the game at hand and eventually defeated Charlotte for their 21st consecutive victory, and the second-longest winning streak in NBA history. Tracy McGrady, whose MVP chances increase with each win, scored 30 points, reports the Chronicle.

The Rockets, who have gone from 10th to a tie for the West's top spot, had to overcome a first-half stretch of 14 straight missed shots, in which they were outscored 21-1. Dikembe Mutombo had two big blocks against Emeka Okafor in the final minute to seal the victory. Luis Scola had 13 points while Shane Battier added 12 for Houston.