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James Harden makes the game-saving block then dodges out of bounds attempt

James Harden

The Houston Rockets emerged as the victors in what was an epic Game 7 contest against the Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday. James Harden struggled from the field all night long, but despite his off shooting night, the former Most Valuable Player winner came up big for the Rockets on the defensive end, blocking a go-ahead triple from Thunder rookie Lugentz Dort.

Here’s a look at that crucial play, which ended up saving the game for the Rockets:

At that point the Rockets were up by just one point with less than five second on the clock. Dort would have put the Thunder ahead by two had he made that shot. Harden, however, had other ideas.

It was a crazy sequence that led to this particular play, with neither team able to execute on the offensive end. The ball somehow fell to Dort’s hand, who himself had the game of his life. Dort had the hot hand all night long, and the Thunder were likely happy for their rookie to take that crucial shot. However, Harden hustled hard to contest Dort’s attempt, which ended up with the former blocking Dort’s shot cleanly.

Harden did not have one of his best performances on Wednesday, but he came up with the big play when it mattered most.

James Harden and the Rockets have now booked their place in the next round, and are set to face off against the top-seeded Los Angeles Lakers in the Western Conference Semifinals. Game 1 of what should be a tremendous series is scheduled for Friday.