LeBron, Cavs come back to beat 76ers

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - SPORTS - By Aaron Bracy

PHILADEL­PHIA >> The Cava­liers have so many ways to beat teams, and this time it was Kyrie Irv­ing’s turn to win a game.

Irv­ing scored 19 of his sea­son­high 39 points in the fourth quar­ter and LeBron James had a triple­dou­ble with 26 points, 10 re­bounds and 13 as­sists, lead­ing Cleve­land to a 112-108 come­back vic­tory over the Philadel­phia 76ers on Sun­day.

Kevin Love chipped in 25 points and 11 re­bounds to help the de­fend­ing cham­pi­ons (13-2) im­prove to their fourth straight win.

“When you have great play­ers, it can come from any of us at any given moment,” Irv­ing said. “When one of us gets it go­ing, we al­ways con­tinue to go to that per­son. It can be any­body’s night. We’re al­ways trust­ing each other. That fourth quar­ter was just for me to be ag­gres­sive.”

Joel Em­biid led seven play­ers in dou­ble fig­ures with 22 points for the 76ers, who have lost three straight. Em­biid also had nine re­bounds, four as­sists and three blocks.

“When those guys are on like that, it’s re­ally hard to beat them,” Em­biid said.

The Cava­liers never led through the first three quar­ters, but Irv­ing got hot early in the fourth to put Cleve­land in front. He gave Cleve­land its first lead on a layup 2:38 into the pe­riod and had 10 of the first 13 Cava­liers fourth-quar­ter points on a va­ri­ety of jumpers and drives. His layup with 7:51 left gave Cleve­land its big­gest lead to that point, 90-86.

Asked what he liked about Irv­ing’s fourth quar­ter, James said, “Could you not like ev­ery­thing?”

“Who­ever has the hot hand, we want to con­tinue to get it to him,” James said. “Kyrie un­der­stands what needs to be done in or­der for us to win. He show­cased that to­day.”

Cleve­land trailed by as many as 14 points in the first half. The Cava­liers got as close as 72-70 on James Jones’ 3-pointer with 3:53 left in the third quar­ter. But the 76ers scored nine of the next 10 points, capped by Dario Saric’s 3-pointer that made it 81-71. James had four and Love two as the Cava­liers ran off the fi­nal six points of the quar­ter to en­ter the fi­nal pe­riod down 81-77.

SLOW START

The Cavs missed their first 14 shots, but Philadel­phia couldn’t take full ad­van­tage and led just 10-2 be­fore James’ driv­ing layup with 6:50 left in the first quar­ter re­sulted in Cleve­land’s first field goal.

VER­BAL EX­CHANGE

James and Em­biid got into a ver­bal al­ter­ca­tion late in the first quar­ter. Richard Jef­fer­son was whis­tled for a foul on Em­biid’s drive, and James ques­tioned the call. Em­biid went to­ward James’ di­rec­tion, but of­fi­cials stepped be­tween the play­ers. The in­ci­dent drew a rise in the crowd.

James pro­vided a cou­ple of first-half high­lights, dunk­ing with 6:03 left in the first quar­ter and then fol­low­ing a missed free throw with a dunk with 1:17 to go in the first half. He has three triple-dou­bles this sea­son.

MORE MIN­UTES?

Em­biid was lim­ited to 25 min­utes, eight of which came in the fourth quar­ter, as part of his min­utes re­stric­tion that is part of his re­hab plan af­ter miss­ing the last two sea­sons with a foot in­jury.

“You come up with some re­ally hard de­ci­sions that maybe don’t fa­vor me or us or what­ever,” 76ers coach Brett Brown said. “But for the long term lens that we all have, we have to be re­spon­si­ble with Joel Em­biid. Win­ning a game in the mid­dle of Novem­ber in 2016 some­times that takes a back seat.”

Em­biid didn’t play in Fri­day’s 105-89 loss to the Bulls and won’t play Mon­day night at Toronto, mark­ing the sixth game he will miss this sea­son.

IT MUST BE THE SHOES

James was ex­cited about many Ohio State play­ers wear­ing his shoes in Satur­day’s Ohio State-Michi­gan foot­ball game, a game in which the Cava­liers at­tended as a team.

“They looked good in those shoes,” James said. “It was a proud moment for me. I don’t get too happy about a lot of things, but I was happy about that.”

TIP-INS

76ers: Jer­ryd Bay­less (left wrist) didn’t play. Bay­less missed the first 13 games of the sea­son with a left wrist in­jury.

UP NEXT

76ers: At Toronto on Mon­day night.

MATT SLOCUM — THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

Philadel­phia 76ers’ Er­san Ilyasova in ac­tion dur­ing an NBA bas­ket­ball game against the Cleve­land Cava­liers, Sun­day in Philadel­phia.

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