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James, Cavaliers take on Wizards in playoff rematch

Nov 1, 2006 - 3:50 PM Washington (42-40) at Cleveland (50-32) 8:00 pm EST

CLEVELAND (Ticker) -- The Cleveland Cavaliers made the most out of their first playoff series in eight years. On Wednesday, the Washington Wizards are looking for revenge.

The Cavaliers will take on the Wizards in a playoff rematch in the season opener for both teams.

In last season's first round, Cleveland used two game-winning shots by LeBron James to defeat Washington in six games. The Cavaliers won the final two games of the series in overtime, including a 114-113 victory in the series-clinching Game Six.

Damon Jones hit the game-winning shot in the waning seconds to send Cleveland to a second-round series against Detroit, where the Cavaliers came up short against the Eastern Conference power in seven games.

In 2005-06, James averaged 31.4 points, 7.7 rebounds and 6.6 assists per game to lead Cleveland to a 50-win season and their first playoff appearance since the 1997-98 campaign.

But the 21-year-old superstar could not win a title on his own. Acquired as a free agent prior to the 2005-06 season, Larry Hughes was expected to help James raise the Cavaliers to new heights. However, Hughes was limited to 36 games due to injuries and never developed any cohesion with his star teammate.

As impressive as James was last season, Gilbert Arenas had a career campaign of his own. Arenas finished fourth in the NBA in scoring at 29.3 per game.

Washington signed free agent DeShawn Stevenson in the offseason to offset the loss of forward Jared Jeffries, who signed with the New York Knicks.

Stevenson will join Caron Butler and Antawn Jamison, who combined with Arenas to form one of the most formidable scoring trios in the NBA.

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