NBA Game Summary - Cleveland at Portland
(Wednesday, January 30th)
Final Score: Cleveland 84, Portland 83
Portland, OR (Sports Network) - LeBron James' driving layup with less than a second to go lifted Cleveland over Portland, 84-83.
Leading by a point with just 4.9 seconds left, the Blazers did a poor job of denying James the ball and the All-Star had room on the right wing, before driving to the hoop and depositing a left-handed lay-in with 0.9 seconds left.
A desperation lob then came up empty for the Blazers at the other end as the Cavaliers won their fifth straight road game for the first time since March 17-April 1, 1998.
"I just wanted to take every possession like it was our last and be aggressive," James said. "My teammates did a good job at feeding off of me. I don't know when the turning point happened but we were able to ride the wave and get a win."
James had 17 of his game-high 37 points in the fourth quarter and added 14 rebounds for the Cavaliers, who have won seven of eight and 11 of their last 13 games overall. Drew Gooden added nine points and seven boards.
"Obviously LeBron was terrific," Cavs coach Mike Brown said. "He put us on his back tonight. We couldn't make a basket to save our lives tonight. But he put us on his back. He did what superstars do and he did was he's capable of doing. That was fun to watch and that was fun to be a part of."
Brandon Roy and LaMarcus Aldridge both dropped in 16 points for the Trail Blazers, who have lost three of four. Travis Outlaw chipped in with 13 points off the bench and Steve Blake finished with 10 points.
"We played the game not to lose in the last few minutes while they played more aggressively to win," said Blazers coach Nate McMillan. "Our job was to keep the pressure on and we didn't do it. In recent games down the stretch we've come down and got some stops. But tonight even though we did a pretty good job early in defending LeBron, he made the clutch threes and the winning drive to the basket just like great players do."
The Blazers entered the final frame with a six-point advantage but quickly expanded that to double digits, 76-66, when Outlaw deposited a floating jumper with 8:56 to play.
Portland continued to keep the Cavs at bay over the next several minutes and led by 11 points, 81-70, when Aldridge converted a layup with 4:26 left.
James then took over to get Cleveland back in the game. First, the superstar sandwiched a Gooden turnaround hook with a pair of threes to make it a one- possession game. Then he capped an 11-0 run with yet another three to deadlock things at 81 with 2:26 on the clock.
Outlaw finally stopped the bleeding with a jumper at the other end with 2:03 remaining.
Gooden then had a chance to even things again with a pair of free throws but made just 1-of-2 to make it an 83-82 game with 1:39 remaining.
Both teams went cold from there until James won it in the waning seconds.
Portland raced out to a 29-20 edge after the opening quarter and continued to play frontrunner, 48-42, at intermission.
The Blazers led by as many as 14 points, 66-52, in the third quarter after Aldridge dropped in a layup with about 3 1/2 minutes left in the frame. But, the Cavs closed the stanza with a 10-2 run to climb back within six, 68-62, heading to the final frame.
This was the first of two meetings between the clubs this season. Cleveland is scheduled to host the Trail Blazers on March 10th at Quicken Loans Arena... Cleveland is now 12-12 on the road this season...Portland is 18-5 at home.
01/31 01:07:56 ET