Harden finished with 44 points and eight assists, carrying the Rockets to a 1-0 series lead.
Minnesota is a team on the rise in the West - Karl-Anthony Towns is a stud.
Timberwolves, on the other hand, will be aware of their underdog status when the best of seven-series games gets underway Sunday.
The Houston Rockets hope they can have the same success in the playoffs, as this team has lost just four games since January 26.
The schedule is set for the first round of the NBA Playoffs as the Minnesota Timberwolves will take on the Houston Rockets. The Rockets had the NBA's best regular season record at 65-17 and won all four meetings with the Wolves handily.
Rockets: Ryan Anderson missed the game with a sprained left ankle.
The Timberwolves kept it close to the end, with a late Rockets' turnover giving Minnesota the ball down three in the closing seconds, but Jimmy Butler's attempt at a game-tying 3-pointer fell woefully short. They will have home court advantage during the seven-game series against the Timberwolves, who made the playoffs for the first time in 13 years.
Houston average 122 points per game against the T-wolves, with an average margin of victory of 15 points.
For the Timberwolves Andrew Wiggins led the way with 18 points, with Derrick Rose (16) and Jamal Crawford (15) pitching in off the bench. Butler suffered a torn meniscus against the Rockets February 23: he underwent surgery on the 25 and returned April 6 against the Lakers. The Houston Rockets are averaging 112.4 points on 46 percent shooting and allowing 103.9 points on 46.2 percent shooting. Capela had 20 points and 10 rebounds at halftime, but was limited in the second half and added just four more points and two rebounds. Last season, the Wolves would have been tied for the sixth spot with 47 wins.
This is Towns' first time playing in the playoffs so he'll have to get used to a more intense game and playing on a bigger stage than he's ever seen. The Rockets know this and they actually rely on isolation scoring as much as any team in the league thanks largely to these switches.