LeBron's record-setting night not enough against Toronto

Posted: Monday, March 21, 2005

TORONTO — LeBron James became the youngest player to score 50 points in an NBA game, but his franchise-record 56 weren't enough to prevent the Toronto Raptors from beating the Cleveland Cavaliers 105-98 on Sunday.

James easily surpassed his previous career best of 43 points, set Nov. 24 against Detroit. However, he committed a key turnover with 16 seconds left and missed a pair of 3-point attempts in the final 14 seconds.

James finished 18-for-36 from the field and 14-for-15 from the line. He also had six 3s, 10 rebounds and five assists. But Toronto's bench did in the Cavaliers, outscoring Cleveland's reserves 34-1.

At 20 years, 80 days old, James eclipsed Rick Barry as the youngest player to score 50 points. Barry was 21 years, 261 days old when he scored 57 for San Francisco against the New York Knicks.

James' point total also bested the previous Cavaliers mark of 50 set by Walt Wesley against Cincinnati on Feb. 19, 1971.

Pistons 110, Spurs 101

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. — Tim Duncan sprained his ankle moments after the tip and did not return, and Detroit went on to win a matchup of the last two NBA champions.

Chauncey Billups scored 25 points, including five straight late after the Spurs pulled within two, to lead Detroit to its 12th straight home victory.

Tayshaun Price scored 22, Rasheed Wallace had 15 and Richard Hamilton, limited by a sprained left ankle, added 11 points.

The Western Conference-leading Spurs, who won the 2003 NBA title, had won three consecutive games and eight of 10.

Duncan turned His left ankle turned after he scored and landed on Rasheed Wallace's foot under the basket in the opening minutes. The Spurs said X-rays were negative and he is day to day.

Nets 94, Pacers 85

INDIANAPOLIS — Vince Carter scored 39 points, including 14 in the third quarter when the Nets pulled away for a season-best fourth straight win.

Reggie Miller, coming off a 39-point performance Friday night against the Lakers, was held to 13.

Nenad Krstic finished with 18 points, while Jason Kidd had 14 points, 12 rebounds and seven assists for New Jersey.

Stephen Jackson led Indiana with 21 points despite being out from midway through the first quarter to the start of the second with a shin injury, while Johnson added 18 and Jones 14.

Suns 97, Grizzlies 91

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Joe Johnson scored 28 points, including a 3-pointer with half a minute to play, to lead Phoenix.

Steve Nash had 13 points and 13 assists for the Suns, while Shawn Marion had 14 points and 16 rebounds. Phoenix also got 18 points from Quentin Richardson and 15 points from Amare Stoudemire. Johnson hit four of his five 3-point attempts.

But Phoenix scored fewer than 100 points for the first time in 17 games, and had 21 turnovers to match its season high.

The Grizzlies' Pau Gasol, the team's leading scorer, played 12 minutes on his return from missing 23 games because of a hurt foot. He had four points and one rebound.

Memphis was led by Shane Battier with 20 points, Lorenzen Wright with 19, Mike Miller with 15 and Jason Williams with 14.

Timberwolves 94, Rockets 86

MINNEAPOLIS — Kevin Garnett had 30 points, 17 rebounds and six assists to lead Minnesota over Houston.

Garnett scored 13 of his points in the third quarter, when the Timberwolves took advantage of poor shooting by Tracy McGrady and the Rockets to pull away.

Sam Cassell, who did not play in Friday's loss to Memphis because of a strained right hamstring, had his best game in recent memory for the Wolves with 18 points on 7-of-9 shooting.

SuperSonics 102, Lakers 100

LOS ANGELES — Rashard Lewis had 27 points and 11 rebounds, Ronald Murray filled in for the injured Ray Allen with a season-high 25 points, and the short-handed Seattle SuperSonics held off the slumping Los Angeles Lakers 102-100 Sunday night.

The loss was the fifth straight for the Lakers — their longest losing streak since they finished the 1993-94 season with 10 straight losses.

That was the last time the Lakers (32-34) failed to qualify for the playoffs, and they're in danger of falling short this season, trailing the Denver Nuggets by 3 1/2 games in the battle for the eighth and final Western Conference berth.

Kobe Bryant led the Lakers with 30 points, scoring 16 in the final 8 1/2 minutes.

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