Regular Season Series (Game 2 of 3)

Series starts 12/13

Game 1: Tuesday, December 13th
Game 2: Wednesday, January 25th
Game 3: Wednesday, April 19th

Cavaliers 106

(23-17, 8-12 away)

Hawks 97

(11-29, 8-13 home)

Coverage: SSN

7:00 PM ET, January 25, 2006

Philips Arena, Atlanta, GA

1 2 3 4 T
CLE 24 32 20 30106
ATL 32 23 27 1597

Top Performers

Cle: L. James 38 Pts, 9 Reb, 6 Ast, 3 Stl, 1 Blk

Atl: J. Johnson 24 Pts, 5 Reb, 7 Ast, 2 Stl

James powers Cavs past Hawks despite fan's laser

ATLANTA (AP) -- LeBron James didn't appreciate a fan's attempt to disrupt his concentration with a laser pointer.

So he took out his frustration on the bumbling Atlanta Hawks.

"Those things can damage your eyes something bad," James said. "I was standing at the foul line in the fourth quarter when the ref noticed a red dot near my forehead. That's pretty serious."

James had 38 points, nine rebounds and six assists as the Cleveland Cavaliers won their third straight game, 106-97 on Wednesday night.

An Atlanta police officer, who declined to give his name, said law enforcement was unable to find or identify anyone shining a laser pointer from the end zone near the Hawks' bench.

James added that this game was the first in his three-year career that a fan used a laser light against him.

"They're like those things guys used in high school," James said. "I hope it's the last we see of them."

The Cavaliers were winning 94-93 with 3:17 left when Donyell Marshall hit a 3-pointer that started a 12-4 run that ended the game. Marshall, who buried another 3 with 58.1 seconds remaining for a 104-95 lead, also complained to the officiating crew about the laser light as he stood at the foul line with 9:49 remaining.

"They were more when we were shooting our free throws," Marshall said. "I couldn't really tell when I was shooting my jump shots."

James, the NBA's third-leading scorer, hit 15 of 20 free-throw attempts, compared to 16 of 22 for the Hawks. He scored on consecutive possessions early in the fourth, the second of which came on a 3-pointer from the top of the key for a 92-86 lead.

"Coming off a back-to-back, with a big win last night against Indiana, it would have been easy for us to not bring intensity," James said. "Early on, our team didn't have intensity. I saw that and I had to pretty much take over matters. I've been able to take my team on my back."

Joe Johnson scored 24 points and Al Harrington added 22 for the Hawks, who have lost seven of their last nine.

Johnson committed three of his four turnovers in the fourth quarter. Harrington had one in the third.

"In a close game like this, you're battling and you can't afford turnovers and allow them to score," Harrington said. "When they were shooting free throws, we were taking jump shots. It doesn't work that way. You've got to attack the basket."

Atlanta's biggest lead, 30-18, came on two free throws by Zaza Pachulia late in the first, but the Hawks couldn't hold a 73-63 advantage after Harrington hit a long jumper at the 4:54 mark of the third and a 21-footer 31 seconds later.

"In the third quarter, everything was smooth," Atlanta coach Mike Woodson said. "We were moving the basketball. We got good shots and we came out of the quarter up by six. Then in the fourth quarter, we got complacent and wouldn't move the basketball, and that resulted in some key turnovers that they capitalized on. That was the difference in the game."

Cavs forward Drew Gooden finished with 14 rebounds.

Cleveland outscored Atlanta 23-8 on fastbreak points, including a layup by James that cut the Hawks' lead to 82-80 with 10:25 left in the game.

James had two of his three steals in the fourth.

Each of Marshall's four field goals was a 3-pointer. He attempted six shots beyond the arc, eight overall.

"I'm never satisfied," Marshall said. "I think I'm hard on myself. I get yelled at from my teammates a lot when I miss a shot or two. I'm yelling at myself, no matter if we win or lose. Right now, I'm not happy. I think I can shoot a lot better than what my percentage is showing.

Game notes

Zydrunas Ilgauskas scored 16 of his 18 points in the first half for Cleveland, which improved to 8-1 in its last nine meetings with Atlanta, including four straight wins at Philips Arena. ... The Cavs entered with a league-best .417 opponents' field-goal percentage since Jan. 15, but the Hawks shot 50.7 percent. ... Eric Snow had a game-high eight assists for Cleveland.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


Team Stat Comparison

Points 106 97
FGM-FGA 31-67 (.463) 38-75 (.507)
3PM-3PA 6-15 (.400) 5-13 (.385)
FTM-FTA 38-51 (.745) 16-22 (.727)
Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 13-42 11-39
Assists 18 22
Turnovers 13 14
Steals 10 6
Blocks 5 6
Fast Break Points 23 8
Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 21 (0/0) 34 (0/0)
Largest Lead 11 12

Top Performers

LeBron James James
Points: 38
Reb: 9
Ast: 6
Stl: 3
Blk: 1
Joe Johnson Johnson
Points: 24
Reb: 5
Ast: 7
Stl: 2
Blk: 0