Spurs overcome Leonard injury, Harden to beat Rockets in OT

While the Golden State Warriors have already secured their spot in the NBA Playoffs' Western Conference Finals, the Houston Rockets and San Antonio Spurs are still battling it out in a neck-and-neck series.

Harden notched a triple-double (33 points, 10 boards, 10 assists) for Houston, who host Game 6 on Thursday night.

Harden ranked fourth among the seven Rockets players to see the floor with a -0.15 nERD in Tuesday's defeat, per numberFire Live.

The hosts led 32-29 at the end of the first quarter.

Two questionable plays closed regulation with the game tied at 101.

It was a superb clutch defensive play from the 39-year-old Argentinian, which gives the Spurs a precious lead as the series heads to Houston for Game 6 on Thursday.

"I was trying to keep them in front of me", Harden said.

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Game 5: Wizards at Celtics, 5 p.m.

The Spurs clinched the win after James Harden's game-tying 3-point attempt was blocked by Manu Ginobili right before the OT buzzer. "I think we have to communicate better in transition and try to get to shooters better", Spurs forward LaMarcus Aldridge said after Game 4.

Popovich declined to speculate on the seriousness of Leonard's injury. During the postseason, the league issues the officiating reviews for all games within three points at any stage in the last two minutes of the fourth quarter, or the last two minutes of any overtime period. "Two All-Stars and even Pau (Gasol), who is 7-foot-something". Harden, who finished with nine turnovers, said he was not worn out despite playing 43 minutes.

Game 5 was a good one, a one-possession contest for most of the fourth quarter and overtime, despite both teams struggling mightily to score during crunch time.

Rockets: Houston has lost four straight best-of-seven series when it was tied 2-2.

After trashing the NBA Playoffs Monday for how truly very bad they've been, when blowouts have been the norm rather than nail-biters, we're not here to pile on with the hate because what's there to slander after we got a gritty, gutty performance out of the Spurs to pull out the game sans the services of their MVP candidate? "Our defense was pretty defective", Spurs coach Gregg Popovich said. "It was tough because when they put a small on you, you have a tendency to go in".

Sitting on the bench, hampered by an injury that wouldn't let him do the things we expect from one of the game's elites, all Leonard could do was watch and seethe.

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