Cleveland, which has the worst record in the NBA at 9-40, dropped its fourth straight game on Tuesday, 93-84, at Washington.
Houston had won three of four before falling to Minnesota on the road on Tuesday, 103-89.
Steve Francis contributed 31 points, Cuttino Mobley 17 and Yao Ming 12 and 10 rebounds but the Rockets shot just 44 percent and allowed the Timberwolves to connect on 55 percent. Francis and Yao both will start for the Western Conference in Sunday’s All-Star Game.
The Rockets defeated the Cavs in Houston on November 19, 97-80. Houston swept Cleveland last season and has won four of the last five meetings.