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NBA: Houston 116, Portland 98

April 6, 2013 at 1:20 AM

PORTLAND, Ore., April 6 (UPI) -- James Harden returned to his typical high-scoring self Friday while leading Houston to a 116-98 triumph over Portland.

It was Harden's second game back after missing two contests with a sore foot and he reached the 30-point mark for the first time since March 17.

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He scored 33 points, grabbed seven rebounds and handed out six assists in what was Houston's fourth straight win. The seventh-place Rockets stayed three games in front of the eighth-place Los Angeles Lakers in the Western Conference playoff race.

Jeremy Lin added 22 points for the Rockets, who limited Portland to 2-of-20 from 3-point range.

LaMarcus Aldridge piled up 32 points and 13 rebounds for the Trail Blazers, who have lost seven in a row to fall out of playoff contention.

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