National Basketball Association
Preview
Milwaukee at Houston
When: 8:00 PM ET, Wednesday, January 18, 2017
Where: Toyota Center, Houston, Texas

James Harden attempts to add to his triple-double count, as well as help Houston break out of a minor funk, when the Rockets host the Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday. Houston has dropped three of its last four games, including Tuesday's 109-103 loss to Miami despite Harden's 40 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists.

Harden has recorded 13 triple-doubles this season, and Tuesday's was the fourth in which he scored 40 or more points - one shy of the NBA record set by Hall-of-Famer Oscar Robertson in 1963-64. Houston's star has registered seven triple-doubles in his last 11 games and is averaging 31.6 points, 11.1 assists and 10 rebounds during that stretch. Milwaukee has lost four of its last six games - including Monday's 113-104 setback against Philadelphia - and players are becoming frustrated with the up-and-down nature of the team. "Everyone says we have a young team, but that's an excuse," Bucks rookie guard Malcolm Brogdon told reporters. "I think there's a lack of focus. We've got to come out collectively, it's not anybody individually. It's a unit."

TV: 8 p.m. ESPN, FSN Wisconsin (Milwaukee), ROOT (Houston)

ABOUT THE BUCKS (20-20): Milwaukee is built around standout forwards Giannis Antetokounmpo (23.4 points, 8.6 rebounds) and Jabari Parker (20.5 points), and Brogdon is displaying signs that he may develop into part of the foundation. The second-round pick from Virginia has started the team's last 10 games and has scored in double digits in each, averaging 13.5 points and 5.6 assists during that span. A preseason injury to starting shooting guard Khrys Middleton (hamstring) left the backcourt without a key figure, and continued strong play by Brogdon would aid the Bucks in their playoff quest.

ABOUT THE ROCKETS (32-12): The loss to lowly Miami was disappointing and partly attributable to an injury to backup shooting guard Eric Gordon and the absence of forward Ryan Anderson (flu). Gordon ranks second in the NBA with 152 3-point baskets, but he injured his left ankle early in the contest against the Heat and scored just seven points on 3-of-17 shooting - including 1-of-10 from 3-point range. Anderson, who ranks seventh with 119 3-pointers, is expected to return against the Bucks.

BUZZER BEATERS

1. The Rockets have won five of the last six meetings.

2. Antetokounmpo averaged 18 points, 11 rebounds, 6.5 assists and 2.5 steals in two meetings with Houston last season.

3. Rockets starting C Clint Capela (fibula) returned after a 15-game absence on Tuesday and was scoreless in nine minutes.

PREDICTION: Rockets 124, Bucks 115
Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div Conf
Milwaukee 20-20 L2 12-10 8-10 1-3 19-17 6-3 14-15
Houston 32-12 L1 16-4 16-8 1-0 31-12 6-4 20-8
Last Meeting
Milwaukee Houston
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
2/29/16 HOU 121 MIL 128 128 42 59.3 121 41 47.1
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Milwaukee J. Parker 36 64.0 3
Houston D. Howard 30 63.2 6
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Milwaukee G. Antetokounmpo 16 0 16
Houston D. Howard 13 7 6
Assists Player  
Milwaukee G. Antetokounmpo 11
Houston T. Ariza 11
Season
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Milwaukee G. Antetokounmpo 1007 53.4 249
Houston J. Harden 1368 44.3 434
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Milwaukee G. Antetokounmpo 367 79 288
Houston J. Harden 400 59 341
Assists Player  
Milwaukee G. Antetokounmpo 240
Houston J. Harden 568
Quickchart Matchup
Milwaukee Milwaukee Off vs  Houston Houston Defense
Milwaukee Off vs Houston - Points For 105.2 Points For
Milwaukee Off vs Houston - Points Against 107.6 Points Against
Milwaukee - FG% 47.7 FG%
Houston - FG% 45.7 FG%
Milwaukee - Reb 42.3 Reb
Houston - Reb 42.7 Reb
Houston Houston Off vs  Milwaukee Milwaukee Defense
Houston Off vs Milwaukee - Points For 114.6 Points For
Houston Off vs Milwaukee - Points Against 103.6 Points Against
Houston - FG% 46.7 FG%
Milwaukee - FG% 44.6 FG%
Houston - Reb 44.4 Reb
Milwaukee - Reb 42.6 Reb