A day after Anthony Davis requested a trade, the Pelicans surged past the Rockets without him 121-116 in Houston.
Davis missed his fifth straight game with a sprained finger.
Jahlil Okafor stepped in and recorded 27 points with 12 rebounds for New Orleans. Jrue Holiday added 19 points as the Pelicans ended a three-game slide.
Okafor says they played hard despite being short-handed. "I think with everybody being out, we just all came together...the message was just to have fun, play together out there and give it your all, we'll live without them. And we were able to pull out the W."
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Houston's James Harden had a rough shooting night but put up 37 points for his 24th straight game with more than 30. He was just 11-of-32 from the field.
Kenneth Faried poured in 19 points and 11 boards as the Rockets dipped to 29-21.
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