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AJINCA IS NOT MESSING AROUND TONIGHT.
Tyreke Evans (knee bone bruise) available to play, but Pelicans have not put him in. Darius Miller now getting more time at point guard
Anthony Morrow not pleased by getting ball taken from him by Patrick Beverley from behind. Excellent open-field tackling technique though
Pelicans led briefly but Rockets take 22-20 lead after 1Q through the most unexpected method, Omer Asik free throws. He's at 61% in '13-14
Southerland and Withey in for Miller and Ajinca. I like giving Ajinca a rest every time Howard is out. Keep him from picking up extra fouls.
Ajinca with the 12 foot jumper in the lane over Asik. Alexis playing well on both ends so far tonight.
Solid defense by Ajinca denies Howard points inside. Rockets having a block party on defense, though. 10-10, 5:36 to go in Q1.
Alexis Ajinca obviously has hands full on tonight with the return from injury of Dwight Howard. Already taken some major contact, even on D
Babbitt with a great dish out to Miller in the corner, but Darius couldn't knock it down. Babbitt proceeds to pick up foul #2 in just 3:15.
Howard with the first of what may be a bunch of easy buckets in the paint, but Morrow comes firing right back with a jumper.
No Brian Roberts tonight. Out with sprain Left ankle
Pelicans starters: PG Rivers, SG Morrow, SF Miller, PF Babbitt, C Ajinca. Reserves: Evans, Southerland, Aminu, Withey, Stiemsma
Starting lineups tonight in Houston. Pelicans have 10 players total available: http://t.co/nbPM65qJ8K
By my math, the Pelicans will have a maximum of 10 players available but as few as 8, depending on Evans' and Stiemsma's status
James Southerland and Darius Miller, both coming off career high in scoring Friday, get in early shooting in Houston: http://t.co/wKBwQO7k9r
Heading home to Sacramento
Pelicans were outscored 28-0 in fastbreak points by the OKC Thunder Friday night.
Monty on two players exiting game with injury after already missing five others: "I've never been a part of anything like this in my career"
Monty Williams on James Southerland debut: "I like the fact that he stepped out there (on the court) and acted like he belonged."
Darius Miller gets his career high in scoring by sinking a late 3. Finishes with 18 points. OKC wins 116-94
Rivers is getting much better splitting defenders. Looks really good tonight
Solid debut for Southerland, though in garbage time. Has hit a few jumpers now and has a few rebounds and a block
OK, James Southerland. He's scored 10 points and taken six shots in his first eight minutes as a Pelican
James Southerland making a nice impact by draining two jumpers, including a three-pointer, for 5 points. His first official NBA points
Southerland knocks down another jumper.
Keep in mind, due to injuries, Pelicans needed an exception from NBA to carry 16 players on roster. The normal maximum is 15
Southerland cheated too far on that butler 3
Pelicans are now without all of their seven leading scorers in the '13-14 season. That group averages a combined 103.6 points per game
87-62 after 3. Will we get a look at James Southerland in the 4th?
Tyreke has a bone bruise and will not return.
Thunder make contact with baseline photogs 2 plays in a row: Westbrook missed reverse dunk and Ibaka failed oop attempt. Heads up down there
Austin Rivers may have to play rest of game. Other point guard, Brian Roberts, is now out. Tyreke Evans just went to locker room w/injury
Tyreke is holding his knee. This is unbelievable.
Westbrook taking over. Amazing energy in that building from the fans.
Kendrick Perkins picks up a technical foul for pushing Greg Stiemsma after the play. That matchup had serious confrontation potential
Brian Roberts will not return due to a left ankle injury.
Brian Roberts (left ankle) will not return. He came down on it fairly hard on play that led to his two free throws. Pelicans down to 10 guys
Darius Miller already approaching his career high in scoring (16 points) by dropping in 12 points during first half at OKC. Thunder up 60-47
Rivers' head just went into Ibaka's knee. Back in game though.
Already writing the recap. The good news: Miller/Rivers having very good nights. Ajinca has hit some tough Js as well.
Jumpers not falling now and the Pelicans are down 14. Expected.
Great first quarter for Darius Miller, who nailed four jumpers en route to 10 points. Also had couple deflections on D. Thunder up 30-23
Pelicans down 7, but probably worse than that. Making a lot of jumpers. Need to start getting some easier chances.
There's a Thunder fan 10 rows from the court yelling "Come on Russell!" just as he shoots his free throws. Not the greatest timing
Rivers got 2 fouls and Roberts came in for him. Westbrook immediately attacked him twice in row. At the line for 2.
Miller doing some damage early on. Rivers' and 1 puts the pelicans up 3
Pelicans were down 12-4 and called timeout, but have scored 11 straight points. Darius Miller great start with 8 points in 6 minutes
10-4 at first break. OKC smothering us.
Westbrook hounding Rivers early on.
Darius Miller draws the unenviable defensive assignment of trying to slow down Kevin Durant. Jeff Withey guarding Serge Ibaka
Pelicans starters: Rivers, Evans, Miller, Withey, Stiemsma. Reserves available: Roberts, Morrow, Aminu, Babbitt, Ajinca, Southerland
Austin Rivers will be the 15th different Pelican to start in 2013-14. That's everyone on roster (except today's signee James Southerland)