Cavaliers 105, Hornets 100By The Sports Xchange | The SportsXchange – Wed, Feb 20, 2013 10:50 PM EST
CLEVELAND -- The Cavaliers waited for some Kyrie Irving magic. Luckily for them, they got it. Irving, fresh off his win in the Three-Point Contest on All-Star weekend, sparked the Cavs' 105-100 victory over the New Orleans Hornets on Wednesday before a national-television audience. Irving led all scorers with 35 points and added five rebounds and seven assists to help the Cavs snap a three-game losing streak. The 6-foot-3, 191-pounder converted on 6 of 9 shots in the fourth quarter en route to 20 points in the period. He was 13 of 22 from the field in the game and 2 of 5 from behind the arc. Rookie guard Dion Waiters added 16 points and three assists for the Cavs (17-37), while swingman C.J. Miles had 11 points off the bench. The Cavs, who also snapped a three-game losing streak to the Hornets, shot 49.4 percent from the field. The Hornets shot 48.7 percent. Power forward Tristan Thompson had nine points and a game-high 13 rebounds. He was just 5 of 12 from the foul line. "This was key for us," Thompson said. "I'm glad we got the win." For the Hornets (19-36), Brian Roberts led the way off the bench with 17 points. Center Robin Lopez had 15 points before fouling out with 3:21 left in the game. Point guard Greivis Vasquez added 13 points and a game-high eight assists. Power forward Anthony Davis and backup center Jason Smith each added 12 points for the Hornets. The Hornets outrebounded the Cavs 39-34. They've now lost two in a row since the All-Star break. The Hornets closed the third quarter on a 13-2 run to take a one-point lead, 69-68. They scored 12 unanswered points at one point. Vasquez paced the Hornets with 13 points and six assists through three quarters. Lopez, Austin Rivers and Smith each had 11 points for the Hornets. Irving led the Cavs with 15 points and seven assists through three quarters. The Cavs shot 52 percent from the field through three quarters. However, they were getting pushed around on the boards, 32-22. His sidekick in the backcourt, Waiters, added 14 points and three assists. Center Tyler Zeller had 10 points but managed just two rebounds. Thompson pulled down nine rebounds but was just 2 of 8 from the foul line. The Cavs moved out to a two-point advantage at halftime, 43-41. They shot 49 percent in the first half. However, they lost the rebound battle 23-15. Forward Alonzo Gee had nine points to lead all scorers. He was 3 of 3 from behind the 3-point line at halftime and 3 of 4 in the game. Waiters had eight points and Irving added seven points and four assists for the Cavs. For the Hornets, Rivers had seven points and two assists. Davis, Lopez and Jason Smith each had six points. The two clubs were tied at 20 after the first quarter. Gee dropped in two 3-point goals for six points in the period. Rivers, starting in place of Eric Gordon, had seven points for the Hornets. NOTES: Many wonder if Cavaliers center Marreese Speights still will be with the team past Thursday's trade deadline. He has a player's option on his 2013-14 contract and could become a free agent. That's why the Cavs might entertain thoughts of trading him. "It's out of my control," Speights said. "It's up to the front office." The 25-year-old Speights said he wouldn't mind staying with the Cavs. "I love Cleveland," he said. "I love these fans. I love playing with these kids, these players. Whatever happens Thursday is out of my control." ... The Cavs have several expiring contracts that could come in to play, including Luke Walton, Daniel Gibson, Omri Casspi and Shaun Livingston. ... Hornets coach Monty Williams is trying to stress fundamentals and discipline in Davis' game. The No. 1 pick in the 2012 draft certainly has some flash to his game. "You remember thrilling and home runs," Williams said. "I'm trying to push solid. I'm more concerned with him setting solid screens or making sure he's in the right spot on the weak side. We're stressing solid, singles over home runs." Part of the problem for younger players are the highlights on ESPN. Then they watch what transpired in Houston last weekend. "They watch All-Star weekend with a bunch of nonsense, and then you try to get these guys back to playing winning basketball instead of the oohs and aahs," Williams said. ... Cavs coach Byron Scott said he would attend Lakers owner Dr. Jerry Buss' funeral on Thursday in Los Angeles. Buss died of cancer on Monday at age 80. Scott said he'd take a red-eye back to Cleveland and be there for practice on Friday. Lead assistant Paul Pressey will run Thursday's practice. ... Cavs guard Irving said Davis has taken ownership of his world-famous unibrow. "I thought he was going to shave it once he came to the league, but he's kept it," Irving said. "He's trademarked it, as well. The unibrow is his." ... Hornets guard Gordon was held out of Wednesday's game. Because of his knees, he hasn't played in back-to-back games. Rookie Rivers started at shooting guard.
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