NBA Game Summary - Washington at Cleveland
(Monday, January 24th)
Final Score: Washington 106, Cleveland 97
Cleveland, OH (Sports Network) - Gilbert Arenas had 30 points and Anthony Peeler scored all of his 14 points in the fourth quarter, as the Washington Wizards recorded a come-from-behind, 106-97, win over the Cleveland Cavaliers at Gund Arena.
Peeler had 12 points during a 20-6 run, helping the Wizards overcome a 17- point deficit to win for the third straight time. Arenas had 19 points in the second half for Washington, which shot just 14 percent in the first quarter only to rally in the second half and stake claim to the second-best record in the Eastern Conference with a 25-15 mark.
Antawn Jamison added 16 points and Brendan Haywood tallied 15 for the Wizards, who trail the conference's best squad the Miami Heat by 3 1/2 games in the Southeast Division.
LeBron James scored 31 points, grabbed 10 rebounds and dished out eight assists for the Cavaliers, who returned from a 3-3 road trip and looked jet lagged. The club jumped out to a quick start, but faltered down the stretch. The team went to the free throw line only 23 times, hitting 15, while the Wizards hit on 39-of-49 attempts from the stripe.
"We gave up a lot of free throws," said James. "We kept fouling their jump shooters and they just came out and made shots in the second half."
Washington also hit 7-of-20 from behind the arc, going 4-of-7 in the fourth quarter and 6-of-11 in the second half. Cleveland struggled to a 2-of-9 effort from three.
After trailing by as many as 17 points, the Wizards took their first lead since a 2-0 edge in the opening stages of the game when Peeler drained a three-pointer 3:31 into the fourth quarter. The basket was part of a 20-6 run that saw Washington turn a 74-68 deficit into an 88-80 lead with 5:35 remaining. Peeler had 12 points during the run, hitting three treys and capping the burst with three straight free throws.
Lucious Harris' three-pointer drew Cleveland within 88-83 over a minute later, but that would be it for the Cavs. Jared Jeffries answered with a bucket, and after two Drew Gooden free throws for Cleveland, Arenas hit a three-pointer to send the Wizards on their way.
Washington's lead later ballooned to 102-88 before the Cavs hit some baskets in the final minutes.
The Cavs got off to a quick start, using a 12-0 run late in the first quarter to take a 24-9 lead and carry a 25-13 cushion into the second. Cleveland then extended to a 17-point advantage in the second quarter when Eric Snow hit a jumper 5 1/2 minutes into the frame for a 34-17 lead.
Washington rebounded after that, outscoring the Wizards 13-6 over the final 7 1/2 minutes to go into halftime down 40-30.
The Wizards continued to cut the deficit in the third. Down 52-41, a 9-2 Washington run drew the club within 54-53. Jeffries' layup with 6:09 remaining capped the burst for the Wizards, who went into the fourth down 73-68.
"They rattled us in the first half," Arenas said. "We didn't know what to do."
The 17-point lead was the largest blown by the Cavs this season...Gooden ended with 17 points and 10 rebounds...Snow had 10 points and 10 assists... Cleveland's Anderson Varejao left the game in the fourth quarter with a left ankle sprain. He finished with four points and 10 rebounds and is listed as day-to-day...The Cavs' Jeff McInnis missed his second straight game with a left foot sprain...Washington Juan Dixon missed the game with the flu...Jeffries had 12 points and Jarvis Hayes had 13 points and seven boards for the Wizards.
01/24 23:35:44 ET