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LeBron James paces Cavaliers to victory over Pistons

LEBRON James scored 33 points and got some timely help from Mo Williams and Daniel Gibson in Cleveland's 90-80 win over the Detroit Pistons yesterday.

With James resting, Williams and Gibson outscored Detroit by themselves in a 15-2 run to take a 73-68 lead early in the fourth quarter.

James sealed the victory on a driving layup, an assist, 3-pointer and free throw to put the Cavs ahead by nine with 2 1/2 minutes left.

The Central Division-leading Cavs have won six of their last seven and are 12 games ahead of Detroit.

Allen Iverson scored 22 points for the Pistons, who have lost nine of 12 and are 21-21 with him.¤

Magic 113, Raptors 90

At Toronto, Dwight Howard had 29 points and 14 rebounds, and Jameer Nelson added 18 points and 10 assists as Orlando never trailed in its win over Toronto.

Mickael Pietrus scored 22 points and Rashard Lewis had 15 for the Magic, who led by as many as 24 and have won three straight following back-to-back losses to Boston and Miami.

Orlando broke it open with a 20-6 run to start the second half, keyed by two 3-pointers each by Lewis and rookie Courtney Lee. Toronto trailed 87-65 after three quarters.

Jose Calderon scored 16 points for Toronto, reserve Joey Graham had 14 and Andrea Bargnani had 12.

Celtics 109, Timberwolves 101

At Boston, Paul Pierce had 36 points, eight rebounds and six assists, and Ray Allen scored 22 as Boston beat Minnesota for its 11th straight game.

Al Jefferson, the centerpiece of the trade that brought Kevin Garnett to Boston and set the stage for the franchise's 17th NBA title, scored 34 points for the Timberwolves. Jefferson also had 11 rebounds for his 26th double-double of the season.

Boston led by as many as 21 in the third quarter, 71-50, before Minnesota scored 15 of the next 17 points. The Timberwolves got within five in the fourth quarter, 94-89, with 5:20 left, but Allen hit a jumper and Pierce made a pair of free throws to make it a nine-point game.

Garnett missed the game with a high fever.

Kings 122, Thunder 118, OT

At Sacramento, California, Kevin Martin scored 37 points as the Kings ended an eight-game losing streak with a win over Oklahoma City.

Bobby Jackson had six of his 11 points in overtime. The veteran guard put Sacramento ahead for good with a floater in the lane and followed with a jumper to make it 120-116 with 1:42 left.

Russell Westbrook had a career-high 34 points and added eight assists for the Thunder. Kevin Durant scored 33, Jeff Green had 28 points and 13 rebounds, and Nick Collison added 10 points and 14 boards.

Francisco Garcia had 17 points, Jason Thompson scored 15 and Spencer Hawes finished with 13 for the Kings. Both Garcia and Thompson fouled out in the fourth quarter.


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