Regular Season Series (Game 2 of 2)

Series starts 11/29

Game 1: Monday, November 29th
Game 2: Tuesday, March 29th

Clippers 84

(32-39, 7-26 away)

Cavaliers 94

(37-32, 26-9 home)

Coverage: FSOH

7:00 PM ET, March 29, 2005

Quicken Loans Arena, Cleveland, OH

1 2 3 4 T
LAC 18 21 19 2684
CLE 27 23 20 2494

Top Performers

LAC: C. Maggette 26 Pts, 5 Reb, 7 Ast, 2 Stl

Cle: L. James 22 Pts, 7 Reb, 5 Ast, 2 Stl, 1 Blk

Cleveland wins back-to-back for first time since Nov. 26-27

CLEVELAND (AP) -- LeBron James was not about to let a sore left ankle, lack of sleep or blown layup affect him.

James hit two key 3-pointers down the stretch and scored 22 points to lead the Cleveland Cavaliers past the Los Angeles Clippers 94-84 Tuesday night.

"I thought we would be a lot more tired," said James, who got treatment on his ankle before the game and shot just 7-for-20 from. "I felt OK.

"We ran early and just jumped on them. We worked together defensively and were just playing complete basketball."

Cleveland had lost five of six before rallying for a one-point overtime win Monday in New Orleans. The win Tuesday gave the Cavaliers victories on consecutive nights for the first time since Nov. 26-27 and revitalized their quest for home-court advantage in the playoffs.

"We got to bed at three or four this morning, but I thought we had an awful lot of energy," said Brendan Malone, 3-2 since replacing the fired Paul Silas as Cavaliers coach. "We pushed the ball and ran off our defense. Our defense was very good."

Zydrunas Ilgauskas had 19 points, 15 rebounds and three blocked shots as the Cavaliers moved within 1½ games of Washington for fourth place overall in the Eastern Conference. The top four teams get the home-court edge in the first round and Cleveland is 26-9 at Gund Arena.

"We want the playoffs and we want to be at home, too," said point guard Eric Snow. "Every team is fighting for it now and we're right there. We have to keep winning."

Corey Maggette scored 26 points to lead Los Angeles, but the Clippers have lost four straight on the road, where they are 7-26 with eight of their final 11 games away from home.

The Clippers were without starter Bobby Simmons for the first time all season. The forward, averaging 16.6 points, bruised his left leg Sunday against Minnesota.

"Bobby's the 'X' factor for us," Maggette said. "He brings another edge to our team. We had to try to weather the storm and (Quinton) Ross was hurt, but that's no excuse."

Ross went scoreless in nine minutes and did not play in the second half because of back spasms.

"LeBron wasn't even hitting shots," Maggette said. "But other guys did. They played harder than we did."

James scored 44 points and played all 53 minutes Monday night in a 108-107 overtime victory. He missed nine of his first 13 shots Tuesday, including an uncontested fast-break layup midway through the third quarter -- a play he normally finishes with a power dunk.

That miss gave the Clippers a glimmer of hope and came shortly after the Cavaliers opened a 19-point lead. Elton Brand scored eight points as the Clippers closed the quarter with a 15-8 spurt.

Los Angeles continued to chip away and got within 80-75. Then James swished a 3-pointer with 3:48 to play. James hit another 3 with 2:13 left for an 88-77 advantage.

"Some teams underestimate our shooting," James said. "I have no shame in pulling up for a three-pointer."

Chris Kaman had 18 points and Brand finished with 15 points and 12 rebounds for the Clippers.

Game notes

The Cavaliers added security at all entrances to Gund Arena as each fan in the sellout crowd of 20,562 got a James bobblehead. The promotion went smoothly. ... The win was Cleveland's first in the second game of a back-to-back set since Dec. 2 at Denver. The Cavs are 4-11 overall and broke a nine-game losing streak in that situation. ... Snow and G Jeff McInnis each had seven assists and no turnovers for Cleveland. Snow has a 39-to-5 ratio over his last six games. ... Clippers G Rick Brunson shot 3-for-3 on 3-pointers and had all 11 of his points in the fourth quarter.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


Team Stat Comparison

Points 84 94
FGM-FGA 30-70 (.429) 34-78 (.436)
3PM-3PA 4-8 (.500) 4-13 (.308)
FTM-FTA 20-25 (.800) 22-27 (.815)
Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 8-37 12-38
Assists 24 26
Turnovers 16 11
Steals 6 10
Blocks 5 7
Fast Break Points 0 7
Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 18 (1/0) 18 (0/0)
Largest Lead 3 19

Top Performers

Los Angeles
Corey Maggette Maggette
Points: 26
Reb: 5
Ast: 7
Stl: 2
Blk: 0
LeBron James James
Points: 22
Reb: 7
Ast: 5
Stl: 2
Blk: 1