Houston, TX (SportsNetwork.com) - If the playoffs have proven anything, it's that no lead is safe against the Warriors, and that the Rockets play their best ball with their backs against the wall.
The Warriors pulled within two possessions after trailing by as many as 25 points, but the Rockets held them off and avoided a sweep with a 128-115 wire- to-wire victory in Game 4 of the Western Conference finals.
Six players scored in double figures in a balanced attack for the Rockets, who tied a playoff record with an explosive 45-point first quarter.
James Harden finished with a playoff career-high 45 points to make up for a 3- of-16 shooting effort in Game 3's embarrassing 35-point loss. Dwight Howard totaled 14 points and 12 rebounds, and Josh Smith stepped up with 20 points.
The Warriors, still just one win away from reaching the Finals for the first time since 1975, held their collective breath when Stephen Curry fell head over heels in a scary scene midway through the second quarter.
The league MVP somehow came away with just a head contusion and returned in the second half. He scored 23 points in 31 minutes and appears to be in good health for the remainder of the series, which shifts back west for Game 5 on Wednesday.
Klay Thompson led Golden State with 24 points, while Draymond Green chipped in with 21 points, 15 rebounds and five blocks before fouling out.