Monday saw a jam-packed day of basketball, as 12 teams took the court as part of the NBA’s annual celebration of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. It was a terrific afternoon and evening of basketball as a whole, but one individual performance stood out from the rest. After posting just 11 points in his team’s blowout loss to the Golden State Warriors on Saturday, James Harden dropped a season-high 45 points on the Indiana Pacers to go along with seven assists and four steals in 40 minutes.
The 25-year-old scored a career-best 33 points in the second half, including 18 in the third quarter alone.
Harden’s scorching scoring campaign came without gunning the ball. The league’s leading scorer shot 12-18 from the field, going 7-12 from the three-point line and 14-15 from the charity stripe.
The former Sun Devils’ 45-point showcase in the Rockets’ 110-98 win against the Pacers was one-point shy of his career-high and accounted for his fourth 40-point game so far this season. Three other players have reached the 40-point mark twice this season:
Check out Harden’s beautiful offensive outing from Monday night at the Toyota Center:
(video via Dawk Ins)
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