(The Sports Xchange) - LeBron James led eight Cavaliers in double-figures with 28 points and reached two more milestones in his illustrious career while Cleveland crushed the Boston Celtics 120-103 on Saturday night.
Kyrie Irving contributed 20 points, Iman Shumpert posted a career-high 16 rebounds to go with 12 points off the bench, and J.R. Smith delivered 14 points on four 3-pointers in what was a bit of a payback win for the Cavs, who have won three straight and lead the East by 2.5 games over Toronto.
On Feb. 5 in Cleveland, Boston trailed by four points with nine seconds left and pulled out a 104-103 triumph.
“Let’s be honest, we were really lucky to win here last time,” Celtics coach Brad Stevens said before the game.
Isaiah Thomas led Boston with 27 points. Former Ohio State standout Jared Sullinger added 17 points and 13 rebounds. The Celtics had their five-game winning streak snapped.
James was his usual dominate self, posting 11 rebounds and eight assists in 36 minutes.
In the third quarter, he passed San Antonio great Tim Duncan (26,366 points) for 14th on the NBA’s all-time scoring list, and notched at least 10 points for the 700th consecutive regular-season game — third longest streak in NBA history.
The Celtics led 35-22 after one quarter, shooting 60 percent. Boston’s 35 tied the most points Cleveland has allowed in an opening quarter all season.
The Cavs restored order with a 12-0 run in more than four minutes during the second quarter.
Shumpert snapped a personal 0-for-12 shooting slump with a dunk at 6:24 of the second quarter. His 3-pointer with 1:54 tied the score at 53, and his two free throws with 1:01 remaining gave the Cavs the lead heading into halftime.
The Cavs led by eight points after three and were determined to avoid a repeat of last month’s disaster. They pushed their lead to 16 points with 2:58 to go on final great play from James.
With the shot-clock winding down, James drained a fadeaway and was fouled, and cashed in the free throw. The Celtics were also assessed a technical for arguing, and Matthew Dellavedova converted the foul shot.