The Rockets could not win with offense, not the way they were finishing drives and not the way Jeremy Lin and especially James Harden were shooting.

They were not going to win with 3-pointers, not with the Warriors eventually figuring out that they might want to stick with Chandler Parsons.

The Rockets were not going to win playing like the Rockets, but found another way. They beat the Warriors, 94-88, on Friday with, of all things, defense.

They kept the Warriors out of the lane in the fourth quarter, much as they had the Mavericks on Wednesday, and then just controlled the boards until Lin and Harden could close out the win at the line.

“We lead the league in scoring and we win the game scoring such a low amount of points for us,” said Parsons, who matched his career-high of six 3-pointers set on Sunday and finished with 26 points on 9 of 13 shooting. “I think that’s more impressive that our defense carried us instead of our offense for a change.”

The defense carried the Rockets further than in any game this season. The Rockets made just 36.5 percent of their shots, their worst shooting in a win this season.

The Warriors made just 37.9 percent of their shots, just 4 of 21 in the fourth quarter to score just 12 points, the fewest in a fourth quarter against the Rockets this season. The Warriors had just four points in the fourth quarter in the paint, a game after the Mavericks had just two. Neither team scored a second-chance point.