Cavs pound Celtics, 108-88
BOSTON — LeBron James had 36 points, nine assists and seven rebounds, Mo Williams scored 14 of his 19 points in the fourth quarter, and the Cleveland Cavaliers surged past the Boston Celtics, 108-88, last night.
James kept the Cavaliers in it for three quarters on a night they lost Shaquille O'Neal to a first-half thumb injury, then Williams made four 3-pointers when Cleveland blew by the Celtics in the fourth, outscoring them 35-14.
"I think in the second half our level of aggressiveness really stepped up on both ends of the floor," Cleveland coach Mike Brown said. "There was no panic among our guys. We knew 24 minutes was a lot of time. We just started chipping away from it."
The victory snapped a nine-game losing streak in Boston, counting playoffs.
"We haven't had much success here," James said. "We've lost nine times coming into this building. So it gets the monkey off our backs. But don't read too much into it."
Ray Allen scored 21 points, and Rajon Rondo had 19 points and 11 assists for the Celtics, who badly missed injured All-Star Paul Pierce (right thumb) when their offense went stagnant in the final 1 1/2 quarters.
NUGGETS 127, WARRIORS 112
Chauncey Billups had 37 points and nine rebounds, Carmelo Anthony added 27 points and visiting Denver beat Golden State in the Nuggets' first game without coach George Karl since he revealed he has throat cancer.
Karl, who disclosed he has cancer Feb. 16, stayed in Denver to receive treatment but is expected back on the Nuggets' bench today at home against Detroit.
BUCKS 112, PACERS 110
John Salmons scored 20 points, and Brandon Jennings had 18 points and seven assists to help visiting Milwaukee hold off Indiana to win its fifth straight game.
Kings: Sacramento announced that forward Jason Thompson will miss up to two weeks after X-rays yesterday determined that Thompson has two fractures in his lower back. He is averaging 12.7 points and 8.8 rebounds per game this season.
Wizards: Zydrunas Ilgauskas was waived yesterday by Washington, and his old teammates want him to return to Cleveland. "He knows I would love for him to be back here, especially while we're contending for a title," said LeBron James.