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Cleveland at Portland

LeBron scores 41 as Cavs hold off Blazers' fourth-quarter rally

CBSSports.com wire reports
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PORTLAND, Ore. -- LeBron James doesn't even stumble wearing two different shoes.

James, sporting one blue shoe and one orange shoe to go with Cleveland's retro uniforms, had 41 points and 10 rebounds in the Cavaliers' 106-94 victory over the late-charging Portland Trail Blazers on Sunday night.

James, who had 20 points in the first quarter alone, said it was the first time he'd worn two different shoes.

"And it won't be the last," he joked.

Shaquille O'Neal had 11 points and 11 rebounds for the Cavaliers, who won their sixth straight against Portland.

Brandon Roy scored 34 points for the Blazers, who trailed by as many as 17 points in the second half but rallied late, closing to 76-74 on two consecutive 3-pointers from Martell Webster and Andre Miller's layup.

Portland didn't get any closer until Roy's 3-pointer with 6:55 left tied it at 87.

After the teams traded free throws, Anderson Varejao hit a layup to give the Cavaliers back the lead at 91-89. Mo William's 3-pointer extended it to 95-89, and after a couple of costly Blazers turnovers, Jawad Williams hit a 3-pointer to stretch it to 98-89 with 2:58 left and Cleveland led the rest of the way.

"I told the guys we gotta play a little more free. I thought in the first half we were a little too controlled - and playing that style of basketball we can't compete against them," Roy said. "We tried to play a little looser in the second half and we were able to get ourselves back into the game but [we] just didn't have enough down the stretch."

The Trail Blazers were hampered without a big man to counter O'Neal. Both Greg Oden and Joel Przybilla sustained season-ending knee injuries. Veteran Juwan Howard has been filling in.

Oden and Przybilla top a long list of injuries Portland is dealing with. Forwards Nicolas Batum (shoulder), Travis Outlaw (left foot) and Rudy Fernandez (back) are all rehabbing.

The Blazers did see the return Sunday night of guard Steve Blake, who was recently hospitalized for pneumonia and missed four games.

But the Blazers simply had no solution for James. His layup capped a 12-0 Cleveland run in the second quarter that stretched the lead to 46-31, and the Cavaliers led 64-49 at the break. James finished the first half with 31 points -- the most the Blazers have allowed in a half this season.

James was 8 for 8 from the floor in the first quarter, finished 13 of 19 from the field, and made 12 of 14 free-throw attempts.

"I just wanted to be aggressive," he said. "You have to be that way in order to get road wins, so that was my whole mindset going into tonight."

Portland was coming off an emotional 107-98 victory over the Los Angeles Lakers on Friday night, and fans at the Rose Garden were hopeful. One held a sign reading: "LeBron may be King but we have ROYalty."

The Cavaliers were coming off a 99-97 loss Friday night to the Denver Nuggets, who won despite playing without leading scorer Carmelo Anthony.

"The first half, they came out like a team that had dropped one and had respect for what we had done," Blazers coach Nate McMillan said. "They came in here ready to play and jumped on us right away.

"We didn't give in in the second half and got ourselves back in the ball game with an opportunity to win it - then it comes down to making some plays."

Notes

  • There was a moment of silence before the game for former Seattle Supersonics broadcaster Bob Blackburn, who died Friday at age 85 after a long illness. Blackburn was a fixture in the Pacific Northwest.
  • In the first half, O'Neal tumbled into the courtside seats and planted a kiss on the cheek of actor Daniel Baldwin, who was sitting courtside in a Blazers jersey.
  • Also in the crowd was former Blazer Chris Dudley, who is running for governor in Oregon.
  • Roy surpassed 5,000 career points, making him the third-youngest Blazer to do so.
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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LeBron James hits 13 of 19 from the field in his 41-point, 10-rebound performance.  (Getty Images)
LeBron James hits 13 of 19 from the field in his 41-point, 10-rebound performance. (Getty Images)

Scoreboard
Cleveland (29-10) «34301824106
Portland (23-16) 2920291694
CLE:L. James 41 Pts
CLE:S. O'Neal 11 Reb
CLE:L. James 8 Ast
POR:B. Roy 34 Pts
POR:L. Aldridge 13 Reb
POR:A. Miller 8 Ast
Players of the Game
PortlandCleveland

B. Roy

L. James
PtsRebsAstPtsRebsAst
344341108
Cleveland
L. James, SF4513-1912-14108141
M. Williams, PG395-154-432316
S. O'Neal, C253-45-8115211
A. Parker, SG181-30-01042
J. Hickson, PF172-30-01114
D. West, SG333-80-02316
A. Varejao, C315-102-281412
J. Williams, SF173-72-220210
Z. Ilgauskas, C152-50-04214
D. Green, SFDid Not Play
D. Gibson, PGDid Not Play
L. Powe, PFDid Not Play
J. Moon, SFDid Not Play
D. Jackson, PFDid Not Play
Totals 37-7425-30422219106
 50.0%83.3% 
Portland
B. Roy, SG4514-233-843334
A. Miller, PG415-114-448314
L. Aldridge, PF408-112-4131418
J. Howard, PF383-70-04156
M. Webster, SG374-112-262312
J. Bayless, PG151-62-20114
J. Pendergraph, PF111-10-01042
D. Cunningham, SF72-30-00004
S. Blake, PG70-10-00000
J. Przybilla, CDid Not Play
S. Randolph, PFDid Not Play
T. Outlaw, SFDid Not Play
R. Fernandez, SGDid Not Play
G. Oden, CDid Not Play
N. Batum, SFDid Not Play
P. Mills, PGDid Not Play
Totals 38-7413-2032162394
 51.4%65.0% 
Other Games
NO 115 Final
Wash 110
Bos 114 Final
Tor 107
Mia 84 Final
LAC 94
NJ 85 Final
SA 97
Mil 77 Final
LAL 95