NBA wrap: James Harden questions officiating after controversial calls seal Celtics' epic comeback

James Harden was called for consecutive offensive fouls in the final seconds as the Celtics pulled off a miracle comeback.

Rockets' James Harden (13) follows Celtics' Kyrie Irving (11) upcourt following a timeout during the fourth quarter.   -  AP

The once NBA-leading Rockets has suddenly hit a four-game losing skid after Thursday's wild loss to the Celtics.

Houston, which entered with the best road record in the league, led the Eastern Conference-leading Celtics by 26 points just before halftime but Boston roared back, closing it within two with 4:36 remain setting up a crazy finish.

James Harden led the Rockets with 34 points but made just seven field goals and was on the wrong end of two controversial calls with under 10 seconds remaining. After a Jayson Tatum dunk brought the Celtics within one with 7.3 seconds left, Harden was called for an offensive foul on the ensuing inbounds play.

Boston took advantage as Al Horford hit the eventual game-winner to put Boston out front for the first time all night with just three seconds left on the clock.

Everyone in TD Garden knew Harden was going to get the ball to attempt a final shot but he was whistled again for running into Marcus Smart trying to get free.

After the game, Harden twice questioned why there were just two officials calling the national-televised game.

Read: Westbrook, George lead Thunder to sixth straight win


A vintage Pau Gasol was on display in the Spurs' 119-107 win over the Knicks. The 37-year-old scored 17 points to go with 11 rebounds and seven assists.

According to ESPN, Harden was 0 for 7 with four turnovers when defended by Marcus Smart, who filled up the stat sheet with 13 points, six rebounds, five assists, two steals and three blocks while registering a plus-three rating.


Luke Kennard earned the start for the Pistons against the Magic but it could be his last. Kennard had more turnovers (four) than made field goals (three) and registered a minus-22 in just 20 minutes of a 102-89 road loss.


Giannis Antetokounmpo eurostepped Jimmy Butler and jammed it in for two of his 22 points in the Bucks' 102-96 win over the Timberwolves.


Clippers (14-19) at Lakers (11-22) — The battle for Los Angeles renews and the Clippers could receive a big boost if Blake Griffin is able to return from a left knee MCL sprain. The five-time All-Star is currently listed as questionable.

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