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109


NBA Game Summary - New Orleans/Oklahoma City at Cleveland



(Wednesday, November 2nd)

Final Score: Cleveland 109, New Orleans/Oklahoma City 87

Cleveland, OH (Sports Network) - LeBron James scored 31 points as the new-look Cleveland Cavaliers started their season with a shooting display that led to a 109-87 victory over the New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets at Quicken Loans Arena.

James connected on 9-of-16 field goals, including 6-of-7 from behind the three-point arc for Cleveland, which supplied new general manager Danny Ferry and new coach Mike Brown with their first wins, respectively.

James, who at one point in the second quarter hit four consecutive three pointers, added four assists and three rebounds while All-Star center Zydrunas Ilgauskas, who signed a multi-year deal to stay with the club this offseason, netted 12 points and snatched seven boards.

"When you are on fire like that, you just have to keep taking them," James said. "You can take them from anywhere, and hopefully they go in."

Meanwhile, free agent signees Larry Hughes, Damon Jones and Donyell Marshall all scored in double figures. Marshall managed 18 points and nine rebounds, Hughes had 10 points and six assists, and Jones chipped in 12 points.

"You can't get too excited over one game, but hopefully this is a sign of things to come over the season and we can build from there," Marshall said. "I have always thought that the early part of the season is very important."

After opening its season with a win over Sacramento Tuesday, New Orleans/Oklahoma City was led by Speedy Claxton, who scored 16 points.

J.R. Smith netted 15 points, rookie Chris Paul, the fourth overall pick in the 2005 draft, dropped in 13 and David West and Chris Andersen added 11 points apiece.

Cleveland took a double-digit lead, 15-4, less than five minutes into the game on the strength of seven points from James and six from Ilgauskas en route to a 35-19 edge after the first 12 minutes of action.

James hit four consecutive three-point baskets as Cleveland extended its lead to 62-42 with a little less than three minutes left in the first half, which ended with the Cavs in front, 66-47.

James finished the first half with 24 points, while the Cavs connected on 9- of-12 three point attempts in the first 24 minutes.

Cleveland maintained a double-digit lead throughout the third quarter, which ended with the Cavs leading, 91-68.

The fourth quarter was more of the same as the Hornets never pulled within double digits.

The Cavs finished the game shooting 54 percent from the field (37-of-69) and 62 percent from three-point distance (13-of-21).

Game Notes

Ferry spent 10 season with the Cavaliers as a player...Mike Brown, who served as Indiana head coach Rick Carlisle's top assistant for the past two years, is starting his first head coaching job...Cleveland has not reached the postseason since 1998...The Cavs were 29-12 at home last season...The Hornets started a two-game road trip. They were 7-34 on the road last season...Cleveland won both matchups with New Orleans last season...The home team has won seven of nine in this series...The Cavs have also won five straight in Cleveland...Cavs have beaten the Hornets in the last six meetings...This was Cleveland first home opening win since 2002.

11/02 23:50:00 ET


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