News ID: 213033
Published: 0213 GMT April 10, 2018

James, Love lead Cavs past Knicks for 50th win, Central title

James, Love lead Cavs past Knicks for 50th win, Central title
Cavaliers forward LeBron James (L) drives the baseline against the New York Knicks during an NBA basketball game in New York’s Madison Square Garden on April 9, 2018.

LeBron James had 26 points and 11 assists, Kevin Love scored 28 points, and the Cavaliers got their 50th win along with that Central Division title by beating the New York Knicks 123-109 on Monday night.

The Cavs reached 50 wins for the fourth time in four seasons since James returned from Miami and the 11th time in franchise history, The Associated Press reported.

James has won a record 10 straight division titles in Cleveland and Miami.

"I've kind of like been a hypocrite of that because I'm always moving and trying to figure out how we can be better the next day or whatever the case," James said.

"So it's always hard for me to be like, OK, another division crown after everything that's gone on with our team and our ball club this year, but it's a pretty cool thing."

Cleveland pulled within a half-game of Philadelphia for the No. 3 spot in the Eastern Conference, bouncing back from its loss to the 76ers on Friday and winning for the sixth time in seven games.

A division title and 50 wins would have been considered shoo-ins for the Cavs before the season, but after injuries, trades and a leave of absence for coach Tyronn Lue, nothing seemed certain.

"It's been it feels like a number of seasons within the season, but it's also gone by pretty fast," Love said. "I know I was injured for a number of games, but it still feels like it was a little bit of a blur, so we got one more left at home and as we always say the real things starts."

J.R. Smith and Jordan Clarkson added 16 points apiece for the Cavaliers, who made 19 three-pointers and won for the ninth straight time at Madison Square Garden.

Michael Beasley scored 20 points for the Knicks in their final home game of the season, which opened a home-and-home series. Rookie Frank Ntilikina added a career-high 17 and Courtney Lee also had 17.

The Cavs led by only six with under four minutes left, but James found Love for a basket, then followed Clarkson's two three-pointers with one of his own to put away the game.


Raptors 108 Pistons 98


Jonas Valanciunas scored 25 points, and the Raptors rallied for a 108-98 victory over the Detroit Pistons on Monday night.

Toronto closed the second quarter on a 21-7 run, and the Raptors also scored the first 13 points of the fourth.

Detroit was without injured stars Andre Drummond and Blake Griffin for its home finale, but the Pistons still led 53-36 in the first half. But it was 60-57 at halftime, and Detroit managed only 38 points over the final two quarters.

Kennard led Detroit with 20 points and Reggie Jackson scored 16 with nine assists. Ish Smith had 15 points on 7-of-8 shooting.



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