for this game

LeBron helps Cavs rout depleted Jazz

Nov 16, 2008 - 4:52 AM By Jeff Brewer PA SportsTicker COntributing Writer

CLEVELAND (Ticker) -- LeBron James scored 38 points as the Cleveland Cavaliers wore down the shorthanded Utah Jazz, 105-93, for their seventh straight win on Saturday.

The Jazz, without four key players, led 74-72 with 1:10 left in the third quarter but could not survive the Cavaliers' onslaught over the last 13 minutes.

One of the NBA's best closers, James buried a 3-pointer with 4:35 left, a power dunk at 3:56, and another shot from the arc at 2:25 to put Cleveland up, 103-90, and effectively sealed the outcome.

"I haven't won seven games in a row in a while," said Cavaliers guard Mo Williams, who was acquired from Milwaukee on August 13.

"It's a lot of fun right now," Cleveland guard Daniel Gibson said.

"The King" finished with 16 points in the fourth quarter to go along with five rebounds and seven assists for the game. Delonte West also was huge in the second half, scoring 11 of his 12 points in the third quarter.

"I expect great from No. 23," Williams said when asked about playing alongside James. "Our team has great chemistry. We care about each other."

James also had a big block on Carlos Boozer with 5:46 to play.

"I'm trying to be more in tune on the defensive end," James said. "I go out there trying with the same mindset like at the offensive end."

The Cavaliers again used a strong defensive effort, limiting the Jazz to 17 points in the fourth quarter. Cleveland has held eight of 10 opponents under 100 points.

Gibson's buzzer-beater at the end of the third quarter gave Cleveland an 80-76 lead heading to the final period.

James had hit two free throws with 30 seconds left in the quarter to give the Cavs their first lead of the second half at 76-74.

"(James) is terrific player with everything going for him, but that doesn't make a difference," Utah coach Jerry Sloan said. "You have to compete against a guy. If you say you're not going to touch him, you will be saying that 20 years from now. We were afraid to touch him. I think we had one foul against him."

Cleveland regained its offensive rhythm in the third quarter and pulled even at 69-69 on West's third 3-pointer of the quarter at 3:35.

Utah's Ronnie Price hit a half-court shot at the end of the first quarter to bring the Jazz within four at 25-21.

From down 25-14 to up 32-25, the Jazz used an 18-0 run to take charge during the second quarter. The Cavaliers looked lost at the start of the period with James on the bench.

Price struck again with a long, buzzer-beating 3-pointer to put Utah up by seven points at the break.

Paul Millsap had a nine-point second quarter for Utah, which was more proficient from the 3-point line than Cleveland, going 5-of-7 compared to 3-of-11. The Cavaliers shot 7-of-22 in the second quarter (32 percent).

In the first half, Utah scored 14 points off eight turnovers by Cleveland, which had two points on nine giveaways by Utah.

The Jazz were without Deron Williams (left ankle), Andrei Kirilenko (right index finger), Mehmet Okur (personal reasons) and Matt Harpring (right ankle).

Jazz rookie Kosta Koufos, a first-round draft pick, made his fourth start, but his first in northeast Ohio in front of his hometown fans. Kofous, from Canton, played one season for Ohio State.

The contest also marked the return of Boozer to Cleveland, where he played his first two NBA seasons before a bitter split.

Boozer finished with 17 points and nine rebounds while Millsap had 15 and eight off the bench.

"We had a chance to win every game on this (road) trip (1-4)," Boozer said. "We need to get healthy, of course, but we need to find out what this team is made of."

Williams added 20 points and Zydrunas Ilgauskas chipped in 16 points for the Cavs.

"There was one time when 'Bron and Mo got a group of guys together at the free-throw line, and that's what we need from our vets," Cleveland coach Mike Brown said. "We need those guys to challenge themselves all the time. When they do that, it's going to take us to another level."

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    UTAH 93

    Nov 15 9:57 PM
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    RUWTbot Took away 16 roots

    Jazz 84, Cavaliers 95  4th - 6:05Nov 15 9:43 PM

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    RUWTbot Added 16 roots

    Jazz 53, Cavaliers 46  HalfNov 15 8:42 PM

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