Irving returns with 28 points as Cavaliers add to Lakers’ woes
Kyrie Irving scored 28 points in his return after missing 11 games with a broken finger, leading the host Cleveland Cavaliers to a 100-94 win over the Los Angeles Lakers, who dropped to a new low Tuesday night in a tumultuous season.
Irving added 11 assists in 39 minutes and showed off his dizzying array of moves as the Cavs ended a five-game losing streak.
Kobe Bryant scored 42 points and Dwight Howard had 19 points and 20 rebounds, but it wasn’t enough to stop the Lakers from losing for the eighth time in 11 games and to a Cleveland team that came in with just four wins.
C.J. Miles scored 28 in his first start this season for the Cavs.
Los Angeles was without starting forward Pau Gasol, who missed his fifth straight game with knee tendinitis.
The Lakers fell behind by 16 points in the third quarter, and despite Bryant’s valiant attempt to rescue them, the Lakers opened a four-game road trip with a loss that could sting for a while.
As the final seconds ticked off, Bryant stood at halfcourt, his right hand resting on his hip, a look of disgust on his face. When the horn sounded, he handed the ball to an official and shared a brief hug with Irving and a long one with Cavs coach Byron Scott, who whispered something in the superstar’s ears.
Knicks 100, Nets 97: Carmelo Anthony scored a season-high 45 points, Jason Kidd made the tiebreaking 3-pointer with 24 seconds left, and visiting New York rallied from an early 17-point hole.
Kidd finished with 18 points against his former team, who used to dominate the Knicks when he played in New Jersey. Now the series is tied at 1-1 since the Nets moved to Brooklyn, both games coming down to the tense final minutes.
Nuggets 101, Pistons 94: Ty Lawson had 26 points, seven assists and five rebounds to lead visiting Denver.
Corey Brewer added 15 points and Andre Iguodala had 12 points and eight rebounds for the Nuggets, who rallied from a slow start in which they trailed by as many as 17 in the first quarter. JaVale McGee also had 12 points for Denver.
Wizards 77, Hornets 70: Jordan Crawford scored 26 points and visiting Washington spoiled the return of overall No. 1 pick Anthony Davis.
Bradley Beal added 15 points for the Wizards, who trailed by as many as 13 and never led until the fourth quarter. Washington improved to 1-8 on the road.