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(Friday, February 8th)
Final Score: Cleveland 119, Orlando 108
Cleveland, OH (Sports Network) - Kyrie Irving recorded 24 points, eight assists and six rebounds, leading the Cleveland Cavaliers to a 119-108 win over the Orlando Magic on Friday.
Marreese Speights scored 18 points off the bench, including a perfect 12-of-12 from the free throw line, while Tristan Thompson had 16 points for the Cavaliers, who have won three straight games.
"I think our guys are just starting to trust each other," said Cavaliers head coach Byron Scott. "I feel they bought in to what we've been trying to do from day one. Buying into trusting each other is a whole different story. Right now, they're just trusting each other out there on the floor. It's all about trying to get a victory. Guys are playing team basketball and that's the reason I think we've been successful the last couple of weeks and it's something that we have to continue to do."
Nikola Vucevic had a career-high 25 points and 13 rebounds for the Magic, who have lost 12 games in a row. Arron Afflalo and Andrew Nicholson scored 23 and 21 points, respectively, while Jameer Nelson registered 15 points and 13 assists.
"We're still together," said Nicholson. "We still talk. We're always together as one unit so whether we win or lose we are still collectively together."
The lead changed 20 times during the game, but it wasn't until late in the second half that Cleveland began pulling away.
Down 80-77, the Cavaliers scored eight unanswered points in the final 2:10 of the third quarter, capped off by Speights' jumper, to enter the fourth with an 85-80 edge.
Shaun Livingston's jumper and a three by Wayne Ellington extended Cleveland's lead to 90-80 with 10:42 left to play.
However, Orlando outscored Cleveland 21-14 over the next six minutes to close the deficit to 104-101. Nelson scored 11 points during the swing.
It was not enough though, as Cleveland went on a 7-0 run to give them a 111-101 advantage with less than two minutes to go.
Maurice Harkless recorded a three-point play to put the Magic within seven, 111-104, with 1:31 left, but it was too little, too late. Ellington fired a long three and followed it with a dunk to give the Cavaliers a 116-104 lead with just over a minute remaining in regulation.
The game was tied at 24-24 after the first quarter and again at 56-56 at halftime. Vucevic scored 15 points in the first half alone on 7-of-12 shooting for the Magic, while Cleveland relied on Dion Walters, who recorded 13 points on 5-of-6 shooting.
Cleveland snapped a 10-game losing streak against Orlando, its last win a 115-106 decision on Feb. 11, 2010 ... The Cavaliers have won six of seven at home.
02/09 00:13:09 ET
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