Rockets Go For Sixth Straight Against Clippers

(Sports Network) - There's still plenty of time for the Houston Rockets to make up significant ground in the Western Conference standings, as they try to close out a perfect three-game road trip tonight against the Los Angeles Clippers at Staples Center.

The Rockets have won five in a row overall and have beaten New Orleans and Portland so far on the road swing. They prevailed for the sixth consecutive time as the visitor with Tuesday's 103-87 victory over the Trail Blazers behind Kyle Lowry's 21 points and 11 assists. Lowry is making a strong case for Comeback Player of the Year, averaging 12.1 points and 6.4 assists.

Luis Scola shook off a knee strain to score 21 points and Kevin Martin posted 20 to help the Rockets end a four-game losing streak in the Rose City.

"This is a tough place to play," Martin said. "We came out fighting. I could not be happier for this team and the way we are playing right now."

Houston is three games behind Portland and Memphis for the seventh and eighth seed in the conference and sports a 15-18 record away from Space City.

Los Angeles is expected to have talented point guard Eric Gordon back in the lineup after he's missed several games with an injured right wrist. The Clippers went 4-14 without Gordon, who's averaging a team-best 24.1 points and 4.5 assists. Gordon last played in a win over Golden State on Jan. 22, and is posting 26.7 ppg in his previous nine.

The Clippers have lost five straight and 12 of their last 14 games, including Monday's 105-99 setback at Sacramento. Blake Griffin posted his 51st double- double with 27 points and 12 rebounds, and Mo Williams made his Clippers debut with 16 points, five assists and five steals. The Clippers recorded a season- high 14 steals on the night.

"They picked up the intensity and their crowd got into it," Griffin said of the Kings in the fourth quarter. "We have to do a better job of matching that intensity."

Randy Foye finished with 23 points for LA. Jamario Moon also made his Hollywood debut, playing just under four minutes and hitting a three-pointer. Moon and Williams were acquired from Cleveland in a deal that sent guard Baron Davis to the Cavaliers before the trade deadline.

Griffin has posted at least 20 points and 10 rebounds in five straight games, and did so over a 14-game span from Dec. 12, 2010 - Jan. 14, 2011. The rookie star and Slam Dunk champion leads the NBA with 39 games of at least 20-points and 10 boards. Foye is averaging 26.3 points, 2.6 rebounds and 4.7 assists in his previous three games. He is posting 17.5 points in 18 starts for Gordon.

Houston has beaten the Clippers twice already this season and has won 13 of the past 16 matchups between the teams. The Rockets are 12-2 in the last 14 games as the visitor in this series.

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