Howard hurting on eve of showdown with LeBron?


Just one problem – Dwight Howard didn't practice Monday. The Rockets center and point guard Jeremy Lin both sat out with back issues.

Kevin McHale said their status for tomorrow's showdown is to be determined. Howard said his back spasms are nothing more than cramps.

"It shouldn't be that big of an issue," said Howard. "I just had a back spasm. It happens. We had a day in between before the game. That way, I get an opportunity to continue to rehab, make sure I won't have any problems tomorrow."

Rocket honors

After pouring in 27 points a game and leading the Rockets to 2 wins in 3 games, James Harden earned Western Conference player of the week honors and Kevin McHale is the conference coach of the month.

McHale wants nothing to do with the credit for leading his team to 8 wins in 10 games in February.

"We had guys play very well and we won games," he said. "And that's the big thing. The enjoyable part about me is I see our team coming together. I feel us, I said this about five or six weeks ago, I feel us, with some time in the gym, practice time and getting together. And the guys have played well."

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