NBA Game Summary - Cleveland at New York
(Wednesday, February 4th)
Final Score: Cleveland 107, New York 102
New York, NY (Sports Network) - Just 48 hours removed from Kobe Bryant setting the Madison Square Garden scoring record with 61 points, LeBron James punished the Knicks for a triple-double as the Cavaliers squeezed out a 107-102 victory over New York.
James' season-high 52 points, along with 11 assists and 10 rebounds made him the first player since Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in 1975 to tally a triple-double while also scoring 50-plus points. His heroics also pitted the Knicks as the first team since December of 1962 to give up back-to-back 50-point games.
James and Michael Jordan are the only players to have multiple 50-point games at the present MSG.
"I don't go out there for the numbers," said James. "To be mentioned with the greats, it's an honor. It's an honor to be mentioned with Kareem and Mike [Jordan]."
Zydrunas Ilgauskas added 15 points and eight boards for the Cavs, who have won four in a row and eight of nine overall. Wally Szczerbiak chipped in 12 points and 13 rebounds in the win.
Al Harrington tied a season-high with 39 points and grabbed 13 boards for the Knicks, who have lost two in a row on the heels of winning six of seven. David Lee recorded his 37th double-double with 12 points and 10 rebounds in defeat.
Down 100-97, Harrington forced a Cleveland turnover which led to a pair of free throws from Lee that cut it to one with about two minutes left.
"I just wanted to try and be aggressive," said Harrington. "Sometimes you have to force the issue, I felt like my team needed me to do that."
James hit a layup and Chris Duhon went 1-of-2 from the foul line before an Ilgauskas layup gave the visitors a 104-100 lead with just under a minute left.
Harrington missed a three on New York's next possession and James was fouled down the other end on a layup attempt with 22.2 ticks left. He went 2-of-2 from the stripe to make it a six-point affair.
Following a timeout, Wilson Chandler and Duhon each missed three-point tries before Harrington dropped in a layup with 11.3 seconds showing to make it a four-point game.
The Knicks failed to get any closer.
James' 20 points in the first quarter led to a 36-24 Cleveland advantage heading into the second stanza. New York, though, outscored Cleveland 28-21 in the second frame to cut it to 57-52 at the break.
Down by seven, Nate Robinson drained a three to cut it to 73-69 with 5:13 left in the third quarter.
The teams traded baskets before a Harrington bank shot and Tim Thomas three- pointer gave the Knicks their first lead of the game, 78-77, with just under 1 1/2 minutes left in the third.
James answered with a three-point play and J.J. Hickson put in a layup to propel the Cavs to an 82-78 lead heading into the final 12 minutes.
Robinson's jumper and two free throws from Danilo Gallinari brought the Knicks within 85-82 early in the fourth.
Still down by three points with possession and 2:48 left, Thomas' foul on James gave the Cavs the ball and prevented the home team from a potential game-tying three-pointer.
Cleveland shot 46.3 percent from the field and New York hit 44.6 percent of its shots...The Knicks were 9-for-25 (36 percent) from three-point range and the Cavs hit 10-of-24 (41.7 percent) from behind the arc...It was James' fourth triple-double of the season and 21st of his career. He has two triple- doubles in his last three trips to MSG...The Cavs moved to 26-0 when scoring 100-plus points...It was Harrington's sixth 30-point game with the Knicks...Cavaliers guard Sasha Pavlovic sat out due to the flu...Cleveland has won all three matchups with the Knicks this season and is 5-1 in its last six encounters with the Knicks.
02/05 00:15:33 ET