New Rocket James Harden has double-double in win

James Harden (right) had 37 points and 12 assists in his Rockets' debut as Houston knocked off Detroit.

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. — James Harden had 37 points and 12 assists in a stirring debut for Houston, and Carlos Delfino made four 3-pointers in the fourth quarter to lift the Rockets to a 105-96 victory over the Detroit Pistons on Wednesday night.


Detroit led 83-72 early in the fourth, but Harden and Delfino brought the Rockets back. Houston acquired Harden on Saturday night in a trade with Oklahoma City and agreed Wednesday on a five-year, $80 million contract extension with him.

The reigning Sixth Man of the Year certainly looked worth it in the season opener. Harden fell just short of his career high of 40 points, and his 12 assists were a career best.

Brandon Knight led Detroit with 15 points.


In New Orleans, Tim Duncan scored 24 points, Tony Parker hit a huge 3-pointer, and San Antonio opened the season with a victory over New Orleans in the debut for top draft pick Anthony Davis.

Davis scored 21 points and grabbed seven rebounds.

After Davis made two free throws with 1:08 remaining to give New Orleans its final lead, 95-94, the Spurs closed strong. Parker connected from beyond the arc with 49.6 seconds left, finishing with 23 points. After Greivis Vasquez missed an open 3, Duncan padded the lead with two fouls shots.


In Toronto, George Hill scored the go-ahead basket with two seconds left, completing Indiana’s rally.

David West scored 14 of his 25 points in the fourth quarter for the Pacers, who trailed 84-74 with just under six minutes left.

Kyle Lowry led Toronto with 21 points.

76ERS 84, NUGGETS 75

In Philadelphia, Spencer Hawes had 16 points and 12 rebounds to lead the 76ers.

Ty Lawson led Denver with 16 points.


In Chicago, Joakim Noah scored 23 points and grabbed 10 rebounds, and the Bulls got off to a good start without injured Derrick Rose, beating Sacramento.