CLEVELAND -- The Cleveland Cavaliers had one of their worst shooting performances of the season, yet held off the pesky Orlando Magic, 91-85, before 16,341 at Quicken Loans Arena on Sunday.
The Cavs (24-52) limited the Magic to 37.8 percent shooting, 7.7 percent from behind the arc. In the second half, Orlando managed just 37 points.
The Cavs shot just 36 percent from the field. It was their lowest field-goal percentage of the season in victory.
The Cavs players learned something in the win -- their first two-game winning streak since Feb. 20-23.
"Defense wins games," Cavs power forward Tristan Thompson said.
He finished with 15 points, 16 rebounds and three blocks against the Magic. In his last two games, he's been a beast on the boards with 44 points, 33 rebounds and four blocks.
"He's killing (people) on the glass," Cavs coach Byron Scott said.
Thompson added eight offensive rebounds on Sunday, 15 in the last two games.
"I'm playing with energy," Thompson said. "We're playing for pride. We want to finish strong."
The Cavs lost 10 games in a row and people wondered aloud whether Scott is going to hang onto his job. They got it done on the defensive end on Sunday.
"On the defensive end, our guys did a lot of good things," Scott said. "In the fourth quarter, we buckled down."
They won despite the fact leading scorer Kyrie Irving was limited to just nine points and a game-high 10 assists.
Irving has made just 12-of-51 shots in the Cavs' last three games (23.5 percent. In their two wins, he's made just 7-of-35 attempts (20 percent).
"This is probably the worst shooting slump of my short career," Irving said. "I'm conscious of it. My shots will eventually fall."
Scott said his shooting isn't a concern to him.
"He's just having a bad shooting slump," Scott said. "I'm proud of the way he's playing on the defensive end. We won the last two games without him playing well. I'm not worried about his shooting. He'll be fine. He's not knocking them down on a consistent basis."
He might not be making his shots, but he's doing other things. He has 18 assists in the two wins, and he was strong on the defensive end against the Magic (19-59).
"I think he knows how important it is for him to be a two-way player," Scott said. "He's the head of the snake."
Irving loves the way Thompson is playing.
"He's been awesome," Irving said. "He's rebounding his butt off. We're going to keep feeding him."
The Magic are going to keep feeding 7-foot Nikola Vucevic, who finished with 21 points and 21 rebounds -- his third 20-20 game of the season. He also has 42 double-doubles. He converted 10 of 20 from the field.
"He was really good," Orlando coach Jacque Vaughn said. "Nik really stepped up and tried to set the tone for our bigs tonight, which was great to see."
Magic forward Tobias Harris, on a real tear since being traded to the Magic, had a game-high 26 points and 12 rebounds. Guard Beno Udrih added 13 points and six rebounds.
"We obviously have to get stops toward the end of the game," Harris said. "We have to be smart on the offensive end."
The Magic led after three quarters, 66-62. They couldn't keep pace with the Cavs in the fourth, as they were outscored, 29-21. The Cavs suffocated Orlando in the fourth and held them to just 6 of 24 attempts from the floor.
Small forward Alonzo Gee paced the Cavs with 19 points and six rebounds. The only other Cavs player to reach double figures was guard Shaun Livingston, who had 12 points, six rebounds and six assists.
Vucevic was a one-man wrecking crew in the first half for the Magic. He not only tied an arena record for rebounds in a half with 14, but he inadvertently elbowed Cavs swingman C.J. Miles to the face. Miles got six stitches on a gash in the middle of his forehead with 8 minutes, 37 seconds left in the first half. He didn't return.
"It was a lot of blood," he said. "I was three to four seconds from passing out. I didn't realize I was bleeding. I heard a guy in the first row say, 'Oh (expletive).' I've never seen that much of my blood."
Vaughn was upset with the loss.
"We still had a chance to win the game," he said. "We were 1-for-13 from (the 3-point line). You have to continue your focus as the game goes along. We can't have blown assignments.
"We're going in the right direction and that's a great thing."
They are 7-46 in their last 53 games and have lost 11 in a row on the road.
NOTES: Cavs forward Luke Walton (ankle sprain) and guard Daniel Gibson (sore elbow) missed Sunday's game. Both players had X-rays that were negative. ... Thompson hopes to play for Team Canada this summer in qualifying for the World Championships. "I would encourage him to do that," Scott said. "The more you play (in the offseason), the better you get." ... The Magic played their fifth road game in nine days on Sunday. "We'll see how mentally prepared we are," Orlando coach Jacque Vaughn said.