The fans in Vancouver came out in droves to boo Steve Francis.
Some even threw tomatoes.
However, Stevie threw it all right back in their faces.
Despite trailing by 4 with 10 seconds left in regulation, the Rockets miraculously forced overtime and defeated the Grizzlies 118-110 in Vancouver. The win ups the Rockets' mark to 4-11.
They can thank Francis. The rookie guard finished with 24 points, 10 assists, 9 rebounds and 2 steals before fouling out in overtime. He was one board away from a triple-double, and possibly even more impressive ... he didn't turn it over once.
But it was his foot-on-the-line two-pointer that silenced the already exiting Grizzlie fans. After a Cuttino Mobley three-pointer cut the lead to 1 with 10 seconds to go, Mike Bibby made 1-2 free throws, which set up Francis to hit the 20-foot bomb to tie the game with 2 seconds left.
Not 15 seconds into the OT period, Francis nailed a huge three that got the Rockets rolling and they never looked back.
A huge game for Francis, and he did it in an incredibly hostile environment.
How hostile? Charles Barkley was shooting free throws (not too well I might add) and nearly got pelted with a tomatoe that a fan threw. Yikes...
The Rockets shot the ball well from the field for a change (51%), but were awful from the free throw line (18-30, 60%). It nearly cost the Rockets the game.
Barkley scored 22 points on 8-11 shooting to go with 7 rebounds.
Matt Bullard (11 points, 5 boards, 4-6 shooting) was big in overtime, hitting two big threes to put the Grizzlies away. Cuttino Mobley and Bryce Drew both played extremely well off the bench as well. Cat scored 17 points to go with 3 assists and 3 steals while Drew hit 4-5 shots for 11 points.
Kelvin Cato, starting in place of the injured Hakeem Olajuwon, scored 13 points, grabbed 10 boards and swatted 5 shots.
Lost in the shuffle was the fact that rookie Kenny Thomas saw significant time for the first time this season. Thomas hit just 2-8 shots (1-3 from long range), but grabbed 6 boards to go with his 5 points. He looked fairly decent out there despite the misses.
Carlos Rogers added 6 points, Walt Williams 5 and Shandon Anderson 4.