An engaged James finished with 33 points, 12 rebounds and 12 assists for his first regular-season triple-double in Chicago as the Cavaliers concluded a six-game trip 3-3 with their 114-109 victory in quite the entertaining affair. And while James has averaged a triple-double in those 15 games, not having a full contingent around him has made winning more hard than normal.
During their last five games, the Bulls have scored an average of 109.6 points per game (6.0 above their season average) and allowed an average of 110.6 points per game (1.1 above their season average).
CHICAGO (AP) - As he exited the court, LeBron James brought a young fan to tears.
Saturday night's Cleveland Cavaliers vs.
NEW YORK - Rondae Hollis-Jefferson scored 23 points, D'Angelo Russell had 22 and Brooklyn recovered after blowing a double-digit lead to beat Dallas. It was the 70th triple-double of James' Hall-of-Fame-bound career. He passed to Clarkson on the four-point play and had another big exchange with that boy when he exited the court. "Rebound the ball. Defend", James said, according to Cleveland.com. Bobby Portis had 15 points and 15 rebounds. The Bulls wiped out a 17-point halftime deficit even though they held out banged-up core players Lauri Markkanen, Zach LaVine and Kris Dunn, only to come up short in the closing minutes. I'm having a heckuva time playing the game right now, no matter who is in the lineup for us. That's where he was hurting us early. "He's hitting tough shots, and that's why he's the best player on the planet".
Cleveland head coach Tyronn Lue spent the second half in the locker room with an illness.
On the season, the three-time National Basketball Association champion is averaging a near triple-double with 27.1 points, 8.6 rebounds, and 9.0 assists per game while also shooting 54.5 percent from the field. And then he increased Cleveland's lead to six with 39 seconds left with a 14-footer over Paul Zipser. They got it back up to 11, only to have the Bulls tie it at 99 on Valentine's 3 from atop the key with 4:13 remaining. He's hitting tough shots.
Cleveland opens a three-game homestand Monday against Milwaukee.
The Cavs scored six straight points courtesy of James and Green before a pair of threes from Zipser and Payne had the scored locked up again at 105 with 1:41 on the clock. The Ramblers had not played in the tournament since a loss to Patrick Ewing and Georgetown that year. But Valentine would not let the Bulls give in. Centers Kevin Love (hand) and Tristan Thompson (ankle) are both out until late March.
Fred Hoiberg snickered after giving his answer, but the coach wasn't necessarily joking. LaVine had a mild flareup of tendinitis on his surgically repaired left knee.