Former Ohio State forward Jae’Sean Tate scored a career-high 32 points to lead the Houston Rockets to a road win over the Oklahoma City Thunder on Wednesday night.
The 6-foot-4 and 230-pound Tate also added 10 rebounds, seven assists, five blocks and two assists to join Hakeem Olajuwon as the only players in franchise history to reach those totals in a single game.
“That just shows the confidence Coach (Stephen) Silas and my teammates have in me,” Tate said after the 114-110 win. “It was one of those nights I had it going. My teammates and coach kept giving me the ball in my spots. And just our will and our fight to fight back. We needed that. Our first road win and it wasn’t an easy one.”
Tate, who played for the Buckeyes from 2014-18, is in the midst of his fourth professional season. He played with the Antwerp Giants in Belgium and Sydney Kings in Australia before signing with Houston ahead of the 2020-21 season.
He averaged 11.3 points, 5.3 rebounds and 2.5 assists in 70 games for the Rockets and was named to the All-NBA Rookie First Team. He’s continued to improve his gam and currently averages 12.4 points, 6.6 rebounds and 2.5 assists through 21 games this season.
“He did it on both ends of the floor,” Silas said. “He was attacking on the offensive end, getting rebounds, finishing in the paint. But then on the defensive end, he was switching onto guys and he ended up with five blocks, which is amazing. Down the stretch, he was the guy that we were going to.”
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