James powers Cavaliers past Celtics
Boston, MA (Sports Network) – LeBron James scored 32 points, six rebounds and
four assists to lead Cleveland past Boston, 107-104, at TD Banknorth Garden.
Zydrunas Ilgauskas added 27 points and 11 boards for the Cavaliers, who won
for the fifth time in six games. Larry Hughes chipped in with 14 points, while
Drew Gooden finished with 13 points and 12 rebounds.
“We struggle on back-to-backs and we struggle on the road, period,” said
James. “To get an opportunity to go out on the road and get a win on a back-
to-back against a team that is short-handed but still plays hard every night
Tony Allen tallied 22 points for the Celtics, who lost for the seventh time in
eight games. Gerald Green netted 21 points off the bench and Al Jefferson
added 18 and 12 rebounds.
Cleveland led by six entering the fourth quarter and continued to hold Boston
at arm’s length as the game headed toward the stretch. But, the Celtics used a
Delonte West driving layup and a pair of free throws by Wally Szczerbiak to
draw within a bucket, 103-101, with 1:06 left.
The Cavs immediately went to James, who missed a turnaround jumper from the
left baseline. But, Ilgauskas was there to clean up and make it 105-101 with
42.9 seconds on the clock.
Less than eight seconds later Green deposited a layup to make it 105-103.
After Hughes came up empty on the other end, Boston had a chance to tie. Allen
drove down the lane and drew contact from Anderson Varejao. The guard missed
the front end, however, and the Celtics trailed 105-104 with 8.5 seconds left.
Boston immediately fouled James and the All-Star calmly drained two from the
line to make it a three-point game, 107-104, with 7.6 ticks left.
Szczerbiak had a chance to tie it at the buzzer with a three from the top of
the circle but the ball fell harmlessly off the rim and Cleveland held on for
“Wow, that was tough,” said Boston coach Doc Rivers. “I couldn’t have been
more excited about how hard we played, how well we played, how well we
executed down the stretch, even to that last shot.”
The Celtics took a slim 21-19 advantage after the opening 12 minutes and
extended their lead to five, 54-49, at intermission.
But, the Cavs closed out the third quarter with 16-3 run to ease in front
heading to the final frame. James’ 83-foot triple at the buzzer capped the
burst and made it an 82-76 game.
The Cavs have beaten Boston seven consecutive times and have won four
consecutive times in Beantown…Szczerbiak finished with 13 points for Boston
while Sebastian Telfair and West each had 10.