Thursday , Nov , 24 , 2005 C.Y. Ellis

Red-hot Cavs square off with Pacers

=== Red-hot Cavs square off with Pacers ===

(Sports Network) – Central Division rivals meet tonight, as the red-hot
Cleveland Cavaliers go for their ninth win in a row against the Indiana Pacers
at Conseco Fieldhouse.

The Cavaliers are off to their best start since the 1976-77 campaign, when
they opened the season with an 11-2 record. LeBron James poured in 36 points,
20 of which came in the second half, and Cleveland ran its winning streak to
eight games with a 115-93 victory over the Boston Celtics at Quicken Loans
Arena.

Larry Hughes contributed 25 points and seven rebounds, while Zydrunas
Ilgauskas added 19 for the Cavaliers, whose current tear is the franchise’s
longest since winning 10 in a row from November 21-December 11, 1997. Drew
Gooden racked up 13 points and 15 rebounds in the triumph.

James has scored at least 36 points in three of his last four games. He is
averaging a team-high 28.4 points, 5.6 rebounds and 4.4 assists so far this
season.

Cleveland is 3-2 on the road this season. After tonight’s game, the Cavaliers
return home for a a brief two-game homestand. They are scheduled to welcome
Minnesota and the Clippers to Quicken Loans Arena.

The Pacers play the third contest of a four-game homestand. On Sunday, Ron
Artest scored 24 points and picked up three steals, as Indiana used an
explosive second half to defeat the Houston Rockets, 85-74, at Conseco
Fieldhouse.

Stephen Jackson went 3-for-7 from beyond the arc and poured in 17 points in
the win over Houston for the Pacers, who have won two straight games. All-Star
forward Jermaine O’Neal posted a double-double with 15 points and 11 rebounds
in the win, and helped his team outscore the Rockets in the paint by a 34-24
margin.

Indiana, which has won four in a row at Conseco Fieldhouse, is 4-1 at home
this season. The Pacers only loss in the 2005-06 campaign on their homecourt
was on November 5 to the Philadelphia 76ers.

The Pacers have won three of the last four meetings in this series. Cleveland
has dropped six in a row at Indiana.

CLE IND