Kyle Lowry posted 16 points and dished out 10 assists for Houston, which is now two games behind the idle Memphis Grizzlies for the eighth seed in the Western Conference.
Patrick Patterson and Goran Dragic both scored 13 in a reserve role and Chuck Hayes grabbed 14 rebounds to go along with eight points for the Rockets, who have won six of seven.
Brook Lopez paced New Jersey with a game-high 22 points. Sasha Vujacic scored 11 and Jordan Farmar added 12 with seven assists for the Nets, who played without guard Deron Williams for the sixth straight game as he deals with a strained tendon in his right wrist.
New Jersey has gone 1-5 in his absence, and have dropped seven of eight overall.