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NBA FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD 4TH TOTAL --- --- --- --- ----- HOUSTON 25 24 26 29 104 PHOENIX 26 23 26 22 97 FINAL

HIGH SCORERS: HOU - CUTTINO MOBLEY 24, KENNY THOMAS 22, WALT WILLIAMS 16 PHO - SHAWN MARION 24, ANFERNEE HARDAWAY 22, STEPHON MARBURY 21

HIGH REBOUND: HOU - KENNY THOMAS 14, EDDIE GRIFFIN 9, CUTTINO MOBLEY 8 PHO - ANFERNEE HARDAWAY 10, TOM GUGLIOTTA 10, SHAWN MARION 8

HIGH ASSISTS: HOU - STEVE FRANCIS 8, MOOCHIE NORRIS 5, TWO PLAYERS WITH 4 PHO - STEPHON MARBURY 10, ANFERNEE HARDAWAY 6, TOM GUGLIOTTA 4

ATT: 15,686


Extended Box

HOUSTON (104) AT PHOENIX (97)

HOUSTON

REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

E GRIFFIN F 27 5-9 0-0 4 5 9 1 1 0 1 12 K THOMAS F 40 10-18 2-4 3 11 14 3 3 3 2 22 K CATO C 17 2-3 0-0 0 1 1 0 1 0 0 4 S FRANCIS G 45 2-10 5-6 2 3 5 8 4 1 4 9 C MOBLEY G 46 8-20 6-8 2 6 8 4 1 0 1 24 K WILLIS 6 1-3 4-4 4 0 4 0 0 0 0 6 W WILLIAMS 22 6-11 0-0 0 0 0 4 5 1 0 16 M NORRIS 24 3-7 2-2 0 3 3 5 0 1 1 8 T MORRIS 8 1-2 1-4 1 0 1 0 0 1 0 3 T BROWN 5 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 1 1 1 0 0 J COLLIER DNP - COACH'S DECISION D LANGHI DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 38-83 20-28 16 29 45 26 16 8 9 104 (.458) (.714) TEAM REBS: 8 TOTAL TO: 9 (6 PTS)

PHOENIX

REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == ===

S MARION F 39 10-23 4-5 4 4 8 2 3 1 1 24 T GUGLIOTTA F 37 2-4 3-4 2 8 10 4 2 2 3 7 I TSAKALIDIS C 24 1-4 3-3 3 2 5 0 2 0 0 5 S MARBURY G 45 9-26 3-4 0 0 0 10 2 0 3 21 J JOHNSON G 17 0-4 2-2 1 4 5 1 4 0 1 2 A HARDAWAY 36 9-13 3-4 4 6 10 6 4 0 3 22 C OUTLAW 12 1-3 0-0 1 2 3 1 0 0 0 2 D MAJERLE 11 2-4 0-0 1 1 2 0 2 1 1 5 M PALACIO 19 4-6 1-1 0 2 2 3 3 0 0 9 J WALLACE DNP - COACH'S DECISION A FORD DNP - COACH'S DECISION J CRISPIN DNP - COACH'S DECISION

TOTALS 240 38-87 19-23 16 29 45 27 22 4 12 97 (.437) (.826) TEAM REBS: 8 TOTAL TO: 12 (13 PTS)

HOUSTON 25 24 26 29 - 104 PHOENIX 26 23 26 22 - 97

BLOCKED SHOTS: HOUSTON - K CATO 2, T MORRIS, E GRIFFIN. PHOENIX - I TSAKALIDIS 2, A HARDAWAY, T GUGLIOTTA. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: HOUSTON 8-19 (.421), E GRIFFIN 2-3, S FRANCIS 0- 1, C MOBLEY 2-6, W WILLIAMS 4-7, M NORRIS 0-2. PHOENIX 2-10 (.200), S MARBURY 0-3, J JOHNSON 0-2, A HARDAWAY 1-1, D MAJERLE 1-3, M PALACIO 0- 1. TECHNICAL FOULS: HOUSTON - K CATO. PHOENIX - DEFENSIVE THREE. FLAGRANT FOULS: NONE. OFFICIALS: GARY BENSON, JIM CLARK, MIKE CALLAHAN. A - 15,686. T - 2:12.


Box Score

HOUSTON (104)

fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp E Griffin 27 5-9 0-0 4-9 1 1 12 K Thomas 40 10-18 2-4 3-14 3 3 22 K Cato 17 2-3 0-0 0-1 0 1 4 S Francis 45 2-10 5-6 2-5 8 4 9 C Mobley 46 8-20 6-8 2-8 4 1 24 K Willis 6 1-3 4-4 4-4 0 0 6 W Williams 22 6-11 0-0 0-0 4 5 16 M Norris 24 3-7 2-2 0-3 5 0 8 T Morris 8 1-2 1-4 1-1 0 0 3 T Brown 5 0-0 0-0 0-0 1 1 0 J Collier DNP - COACH'S DECISION D Langhi DNP - COACH'S DECISION

_____________________________________________________ TOTALS 240 38-83 20-28 16-45 26 16 104 _____________________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.458, FT-.714. 3-Point Goals: 8-19, .421 (E Griffin 2-3, S Francis 0-1, C Mobley 2-6, W Williams 4-7, M Norris 0-2). Team Rebounds: 8. Blocked Shots:4 (K Cato 2, T Morris, E Griffin). Turnovers:9 (S Francis 4, K Thomas 2, M Norris, E Griffin, C Mobley). Steals: 8 (K Thomas 3, W Williams, M Norris, T Brown, T Morris, S Francis).

PHOENIX (97)

fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp S Marion 39 10-23 4-5 4-8 2 3 24 T Gugliotta 37 2-4 3-4 2-10 4 2 7 I Tsakalidis 24 1-4 3-3 3-5 0 2 5 S Marbury 45 9-26 3-4 0-0 10 2 21 J Johnson 17 0-4 2-2 1-5 1 4 2 A Hardaway 36 9-13 3-4 4-10 6 4 22 C Outlaw 12 1-3 0-0 1-3 1 0 2 D Majerle 11 2-4 0-0 1-2 0 2 5 M Palacio 19 4-6 1-1 0-2 3 3 9 J Wallace DNP - COACH'S DECISION A Ford DNP - COACH'S DECISION J Crispin DNP - COACH'S DECISION

_____________________________________________________ TOTALS 240 38-87 19-23 16-45 27 22 97 _____________________________________________________

Percentages: FG-.437, FT-.826. 3-Point Goals: 2-10, .200 (S Marbury 0-3, J Johnson 0-2, A Hardaway 1-1, D Majerle 1-3, M Palacio 0-1). Team Rebounds: 8. Blocked Shots:4 (I Tsakalidis 2, A Hardaway, T Gugliotta). Turnovers:12 (A Hardaway 3, T Gugliotta 3, S Marbury 3, D Majerle, S Marion, J Johnson). Steals: 4 (T Gugliotta 2, D Majerle, S Marion).

-------------------------------------------- HOUSTON 25 24 26 29 - 104 PHOENIX 26 23 26 22 - 97 --------------------------------------------

Technical fouls: Houston - 1 (K Cato, 4:41 3rd). Phoenix - (Defensive Three, 6:07 2nd). Flagrant fouls: None. A: 15,686. T: 2:12. Officials: Gary Benson, Jim Clark, Mike Callahan.


Game Story

PHOENIX (Ticker) -- In his first game back from the injured list, Walt Williams proved to be the veteran presence the Houston Rockets needed.

Williams scored 13 of his 16 points in the fourth quarter to lead the Rockets to a 104-97 victory over the Phoenix Suns.

Williams, a nine-year pro and one of the few veterans on the Rockets, was activated before the game after missing 18 with a right ankle strain.

Although, he played just 22 minutes, Williams rallied the Rockets from a 79-76 deficit early in the final period. He scored eight straight points, including a pair of 3-pointers in a 17-3 surge that gave Houston a 93-82 lead with 6:05 remaining.

"Coming to the games and just watching, it's tough," Williams said. "To do that especially down the end when I was feeling good, was harder. I wanted to come out and get a couple of days of practice and have a good rhythm coming into the game."

The game featured 11 lead changes and 13 ties but none after Williams made a 3-pointer that put the Rockets up 80-79 with 10:11 left in the game.

"Walt was huge," Houston guard Cuttino Mobley said. "He hit three or four threes and it opened it up for us. When the rest of us, Moochie (Norris), Steve and myself penetrate like that, it's hard to guard us when we're hitting like that."

Williams shot 4-of-7 from beyond the arc, helping Houston click at 42 percent(8-of-19) from 3-point range.

Mobley led the Rockets with 24 points and Kenny Thomas collected 22 and 14 rebounds. All-Star point guard Steve Francis was held to nine points.

Shawn Marion scored 24 points to lead Phoenix, which was unable to duplicate Thursday's rally against Indiana.

The Suns used an 11-3 run over 4:15, capped by newcomer Milt Palacio's three-point play, to get within 96-93 with 90 seconds remaining.

But Mobley went through three defenders for a layup and caught a break when Penny Hardaway was whistled for a lane violation. Mobley sank the resulting free throw to put the Rockets up, 99-93, with 1:19 left.

Phoenix still had a chance, but Stephon Marbury, who scored nine points in the final two minutes Thursday, missed an easy layup and Francis grabbed a crucial defensive rebound.

"We didn't execute when we were supposed to and at the end of the game, that's when you're supposed to," Marbury said. "Those guys came out with a really weird lineup and they made some really big plays at the end."

For most of the game, the Rockets used a four-guard alignment, enabling them to run pick-and-roll plays constantly.

"That's the same pick-and-roll they ran on us the first time they played us here," Hardaway said. "We can't stop it. You want to give up jump shots instead of layups, but they make everything. I think they just love coming in here and playing in this building. They make all kinds of shots."

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