LeBron James scored 26 points before sitting out the fourth quarter as the Cleveland Cavaliers quickly took a charged-up New York crowd out of the game in a 119-101 victory over the Knicks on Tuesday.
Delonte West added 16 points and Wally Szczerbiak had 15 for the Cavaliers, who rang up their highest point total of the season and put seven players in double figures, showing they may have more help than ever for James, the NBA’s leading scorer.
Fans hoping someday to see James play in New York got to learn how good his Cleveland team is right now. The Cavaliers turned it into a blowout while James was enjoying his first rest to start the second quarter, and improved the NBA’s third-best record to 11-3.
Quentin Richardson scored 22 points and newcomer Tim Thomas had 16 for the Knicks, who lost for the fourth time in five games and fell to 7-7.
SUNS 99, THUNDER 98
At Oklahoma City, Matt Barnes hit a three-pointer from the left wing with 25.7 seconds left to complete Phoenix’s fourth-quarter rally and spoil Scott Brooks’ home debut as Oklahoma City head coach.
The Thunder led throughout the second half and had been up by as much as 16 late in the third quarter before Steve Nash rallied the Suns with a 13-0 run.
Barnes’ three-pointer gave Phoenix its first lead of the second half.
The Thunder had two final chances to win, but Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook both missed shots on their final possession.
Amare Stoudemire finished with 22 points, Nash had 20 points and 15 assists and Barnes scored 16.
Durant led Oklahoma City with 29 points and Chris Wilcox scored a season-high 18.
WIZARDS 124, WARRIORS 100
At Washington, Ed Tapscott’s coaching debut with Washington was much more successful than Jamal Crawford’s playing debut with Golden State.
Coaching his first game of any sort since a spot on the bench in his daughter’s youth league in 1993, Tapscott juggled a few things and guided the Wizards to a blowout, breaking a five-game losing streak and avoiding the worst 12-game start in franchise history.
Caron Butler scored a season-high 35 points, Andray Blatche had season highs with 25 points and 12 rebounds, and Antawn Jamison added 25 points and 11 rebounds as the Wizards improved to 2-10 with their best scoring output of the season. Their 124 points topped any number achieved in the first 11 games under Eddie Jordan, who was fired on Monday and replaced by Tapscott, who had been the team’s director of player development.
Corey Maggette scored 17 to lead the Warriors, who have lost three straight.
MAVERICKS 109, PACERS 106
At Dallas, Jason Terry scored 29 points and combined with Jason Kidd to key a fourth-quarter run that rallied Dallas past Indiana for its fifth straight victory.
Dirk Nowitzki added 24 points and 12 rebounds and Antoine Wright scored a career-high 24 for the Mavericks. Terry and Kidd combined for all of Dallas’ points in an 18-8 spurt that helped the Mavs erase a 13-point second-half deficit.
Kidd finished with 11 points and 13 assists as the Mavericks won their second consecutive home game after dropping their first four.
Danny Granger’s 22 points and Troy Murphy’s 21 with 14 rebounds led the Pacers. Brandon Rush added 18 points off the bench for Indiana, which has lost five of six.
LAKERS 120, NETS 93
At Los Angeles, Pau Gasol had 26 points and eight rebounds before sitting out the fourth quarter as Los Angeles overcame a poor shooting performance by Kobe Bryant to rout New Jersey and improve the NBA’s best record to 12-1.