The Rockets made a series-high 14 3-pointers on 35 attempts, making up for getting outscored in the paint, in second-chance points and on the fast break. Oklahoma City made just 8 of 33 from 3-point range, missing 14 of its first 15 attempts.
"We pride ourself on getting defensive stops and we didn't do that tonight," Brooks said. "We didn't make shots either. That's a bad combination when they're hitting 3s and we're not hitting 3s."
Rookie Patrick Beverley, who made a lunging attempt at a steal in Game 2 that resulted in Westbrook's knee injury, received a hearty boo during pregame introductions, then got booed each time he touched the ball.
Undeterred, he drove against Jackson for the first basket of the game and the Rockets got out to a strong start. Beverley was called for a technical foul for thrusting his left forearm into Jackson after the Thunder guard made a steal attempt similar to the one that ended up with Westbrook getting hurt.
"My teammates told me to come out here and stay aggressive. This is a family unit with this team," said Beverley, who scored 14. "I tried to not hear the boos and tried to go out and stay focused on the game plan today."
Durant hit the free throw after Beverley's technical to complete a string of eight straight Oklahoma City points and put the Thunder up 17-16, but Houston responded with its own 8-0 run and wouldn't trail again.
NOTES: Westbrook watched the game from a suite. He was unable to be on the bench because his leg needed to be extended. ... With the clock running down at the end of the game, McHale told Harden to "go ahead and shoot it if you like," but Harden opted to take the shot-clock violation. Derek Fisher popped in a 3-pointer for Oklahoma City at the final buzzer.