Final

Regular Season Series (Game 1 of 3)

Series starts 11/13

Game 1: Saturday, November 13th
Wizards74Final
Cavaliers105
Game 2: Monday, January 24th
Wizards106Final
Cavaliers97
Game 3: Friday, April 15th
Cavaliers111Final
Wizards119

Wizards 74

(3-3, 2-2 away)

Cavaliers 105

(3-3, 2-1 home)

    Coverage: WBDC

    1:00 PM ET, November 13, 2004

    Quicken Loans Arena, Cleveland, OH

    1 2 3 4 T
    WSH 11 24 26 1374
    CLE 28 24 24 29105

    Top Performers

    Washington: G. Arenas 25 Pts, 1 Reb, 2 Ast, 2 Stl

    Cleveland: L. James 24 Pts, 9 Reb, 4 Ast, 3 Stl, 2 Blk

    Ilgauskas adds 21 points in blowout of Wizards

    CLEVELAND (AP) -- For the first time as a pro, LeBron James is on a .500 team. It's nice, but he expects the Cleveland Cavaliers to be much better than that.

    "We're just getting started," James said. "We're getting better every game."

    He seems to be. James scored 24 points, Zydrunas Ilgauskas added 21 and the Cavaliers won their third straight after an 0-3 start, beating the Washington Wizards 105-74 on Saturday.

    Drew Gooden added 15 rebounds and 14 points and Jeff McInnis had 13 points and 11 assists for the Cavaliers, who haven't been at .500 since Nov. 5, 2002, when they were 2-2.

    "Oh, is it?" James said when told that he had finally reached .500 in his second season in the NBA. "It feels good. But we can take this to another level."

    James has been raising his game lately when the Cavaliers need him most.

    He scored nine of the Cavaliers' first 11 points in the fourth, taking over just as he did Wednesday when he outscored Phoenix 17-14 in the final 12 minutes and the Cavs overcame a 19-point deficit to win in overtime.

    The reigning rookie of the year came in as the NBA's second leading scorer and Cleveland's undisputed leader. James has accounted for 37 percent of the Cavaliers' points in the fourth quarter.

    "He's the best," Cavs coach Paul Silas said. "He's unbelievable. He wants the ball and he wants the responsibility. Everything we need, he provides. He's so special."

    James added nine rebounds, four assists, three steals and two blocks in 38 minutes.

    During their three-game winning streak, the Cavs have outscored their opponents 83-38 in the fourth.

    Gilbert Arenas scored 25 points to lead the Wizards, who ran out of gas after trimming a 23-point deficit to six in the third quarter.

    Antawn Jamison had 14 and nine rebounds for Washington, which was held 28 points under its average and got outrebounded 62-32 -- 23-5 in the fourth quarter.

    The Wizards are hurting up front with Kwame Brown and Etan Thomas on the injured list.

    "That's no excuse," center Brendan Haywood said. "On the offensive end, we have to do a better job of boxing everybody out, from the center spot to the guard spot."

    Washington trailed by 17 at half and 21 in the third when Arenas heated up, hitting a pair of 3s and scoring 10 during a 19-4 spurt to bring Washington within 60-54.

    The Cavs, however, responded by going to Ilgauskas, who scored eight points in a 16-4 burst as Cleveland went ahead 76-61 entering the fourth.

    James then hit a 14-foot turnaround jumper, two free throws and a 16-footer before completing a three-point play to put the Cavs ahead 87-67 with 7:41 left.

    Drew Gooden was fouled making a fine up-and-under layup and his free throw made it 92-67 with 6:15 to go. As Gooden went to the foul line, James walked toward center court, waving his arms to get the Gund Arena crowd on its feet.

    Unlike last season when he would defer to veteran teammates down the stretch, James wants the ball in the fourth.

    "My teammates know they can count on me and come to me," he said. "I want to lead this team."

    James, Ilgauskas and Gooden were all replaced with more than six minutes left as Silas was able to clear his bench in the fourth quarter for the first time this season.

    "We're starting to get it," said Silas, whose team started 6-19 a year ago. "We came out with a fire and I thought our focus was as good as I've seen it."

    Game notes


    James has scored more than 20 points in all six games this season. ... The Wizards' Larry Hughes missed all eight shots in the first half. ... Silas said guard Dajuan Wagner (ankle sprain) isn't quite ready to come off the injured list. ... Wizards guard Steve Blake, who underwent surgery on his right ankle in September, was sore after practicing on Friday. Coach Eddie Jordan will evaluate Blake next week before deciding when to activate him. ... Gooden added four steals. ... Haywood tied a career-high with seven blocks.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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    Team Stat Comparison

     
    WSH
    CLE
    Points 74 105
    FGM-FGA 29-87 (.333) 43-90 (.478)
    3PM-3PA 5-9 (.556) 2-9 (.222)
    FTM-FTA 11-14 (.786) 17-19 (.895)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 9-32 15-62
    Assists 15 31
    Turnovers 13 17
    Steals 7 10
    Blocks 9 6
    Fast Break Points 7 7
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 19 (0/0) 16 (0/0)
    Largest Lead 0 33

    Top Performers

    Washington
    Cleveland
    Gilbert Arenas Arenas
    Points: 25
    Reb: 1
    Ast: 2
    Stl: 2
    Blk: 0
    LeBron James James
    Points: 24
    Reb: 9
    Ast: 4
    Stl: 3
    Blk: 2