for this game

Hughes helps Cavaliers cruise past SuperSonics

Dec 16, 2006 - 5:25 AM CLEVELAND (Ticker) -- Larry Hughes and the Cleveland Cavaliers are taking care of business at home.

Hughes scored 25 points and LeBron James nearly had a triple-double as the Cavaliers coasted to a 106-84 victory over the Seattle SuperSonics.

Zydrunas Ilgauskas scored 17 points and Anderson Varejao had nine and 13 rebounds off the bench for the Cavaliers, who have won four straight at Quicken Loans Arena. They are an Eastern Conference-best 11-2 at home.

"We played a good game tonight," Hughes said. "We've got to keep it going."

Hughes was in rhythm from the outset, making his first eight shots and finishing 11-of-16 from the field.

"We have to play with energy for 48 minutes," Hughes said. "With the talent that we have if we can play with effort for 48 minutes, we feel like we can beat anybody."

James had 22 points, nine rebounds and seven assists for the Cavaliers, who raced to a 64-45 halftime lead. The superstar also started hot, hitting his first six shots and finishing 9-of-14 from the floor.

"We were just patient," James said. "We ran through all of our offensive cuts. We ran the offense and we got some good looks at the basket."

Chris Wilcox scored 20 points and fellow reserve Mickael Gelabale added 16 for Seattle, which has lost three straight games.

"I know the team and they just don't believe right now that they can win," Sonics coach Bob Hill said.

Earl Watson and Rashard Lewis contributed 10 points apiece for the Sonics, who shot just 37 percent (31-of-85) from the field. Seattle received 52 points from its bench, compared to just 32 from its starters.

"As a group, holding Seattle to 36.5 percent and two fastbreak points was tremendous," Cavaliers coach Mike Brown said. "That team is fifth in the NBA in field goal attempts so they like to get up and down the floor."

The Sonics continue to play without All-Star Ray Allen, who is battling a sore right ankle.

"I don't think we're a lost team or anything like that," Sonics forward Nick Collison said. "I just think we've hit a tough road trip without one of our best players, and we have to play near perfect to beat some of these teams."

Allen, who leads the team with an average of 25.3 points, has missed the last six games for Seattle, which is 3-3 in that span.

"We have to go out and just want the game more than the other team, with or without Ray (Allen)," Sonics guard Damien Wilkins said.

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