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Cavs coach irate over late foul call

CLEVELAND Cavaliers coach Mike Brown will gladly take the fine ?? if it makes a difference in the calls LeBron James gets.

Brown watched his star player score 47 points and do everything but win the game on Tuesday night.

One problem: James' foul with 0.2 seconds left gave the Pacers' Danny Granger a chance to win it from the free throw line. Granger sank the first, then missed the second intentionally to seal an improbable 96-95 victory that left Brown and his players fuming about the call.

"I don't care if I get fined. It is what it is. I saw the two plays, just a bad call determined the outcome of that game," Brown said. "If they want to fine me for telling the truth, fine me. This isn't me. I never do this."

The usually composed Brown couldn't help himself after a wild finish.

While James spoke in a more moderate tone, he, too, was upset with the call. He tugged at his headband and walked around on the floor while Granger was shooting free throws, and when the game ended, James quickly left the floor and walked with disgust to the locker room.

"I think Mike Brown gave it his all," James said. "He basically said what he felt."

Indiana, which ended a nine-game losing streak to the Cavaliers, saw it differently.

A few moments earlier, Cleveland had tried an alley-oop play to James off an inbounds pass - the same play Indiana used to win it.

While James never caught the ball, Granger drew the foul with 0.4 seconds to go, and James made both free throws to tie the score at 95.

"They were very, very consistent calls on the last two plays," Pacers coach Jim O'Brien said.

In other National Basketball Association games, it was: Lakers 105, Thunder 98; Hawks 111, Wizards 90; Nuggets 99, Heat 82; Spurs 108, Nets 93; Raptors 110, Timberwolves 102; Bulls 107, Pistons 102; Mavericks 118, Kings 100; and Warriors 144, Knicks 127.

For James, it ruined a night in which he turned Conseco Fieldhouse in Indianapolis into his own personal showcase.

He connected on 15 of 21 shots, 13 of 14 free throws, made 4 of 7 3-pointers, and had seven rebounds and four assists. He repeatedly had the crowd on its feet with high-flying dunks, nifty no-look passes, one spectacular block and an array of head fakes, crossover dribbles and acrobatic moves.

Yet somehow, the short-handed Pacers absorbed the body blows and survived.

Troy Murphy scored 18 to lead Indiana, while Granger, playing on a sore right knee, added 16. Indiana played without Marquis Daniels, Mike Dunleavy and Jeff Foster but got some key late plays from backups Travis Diener and Brandon Rush.

Cleveland lost its second straight game for the first time this season and went home in disbelief.

In Los Angeles, Kobe Bryant scored 34 points and became the youngest player in NBA history to hit 23,000. Bryant made a free throw with 5:13 left in the second quarter to reach 23,000 at 30 years, 171 days old. He joined 20 others in league history who've reached the mark.

Pau Gasol had 22 points and 14 rebounds, and Lamar Odom had 12 points and a season-high 18 boards for the Lakers.

Kevin Durant finished with 31 points, his fifth 30-point game in a row, and 10 rebounds in the loss.


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