Erratic Cavaliers are routed by Rockets

From the Associated Press

LeBron James watched another open shot bounce off the rim, then screamed as he turned and trotted down the court.

It was that kind of night for the Cleveland Cavaliers -- so bad, it almost ended up in the record books.

The Houston Rockets overcame a mild concussion to Tracy McGrady to beat the cold-shooting Cavaliers, 81-63, Saturday night at Houston.

James scored 21 points, but made only seven of 22 shots. Cleveland shot 28% (22 for 78), flirting with its all-time worst shooting performance (23.8%), set in 1970.


The Cavaliers’ point total was just four points ahead of their all-time low for a game (59), set in 1997 against San Antonio.

“You shoot 28% from the field, you don’t have a chance to win,” said James.

The Rockets’ offense was only slightly better after McGrady took an inadvertent elbow from Dikembe Mutombo in the first quarter and did not return.

Trainer Keith Jones said after the game that McGrady was fine and didn’t have to go to the hospital. Jones said McGrady would be re-evaluated today.


New Jersey 112, Philadelphia 107 -- The Nets, who led by 11 points entering the final quarter at home, didn’t put the 76ers away until Vince Carter made four free throws in the final four seconds. Philadelphia had drawn to within 108-107 on a three-point play by Allan Iverson with 4.3 seconds left.

New Jersey seemingly was in control in the final minute when Richard Jefferson made one of two free throws for a 107-99 lead with 23.4 seconds to play. But the 76ers got to within 107-104 with 9.7 seconds left.

Miami 98, Memphis 97 -- James Posey made a three-point basket from 26 feet at the final buzzer to give the visiting Heat the victory.

Trailing, 97-95, Miami controlled a jump ball with 1.8 seconds left and called timeout. Jason Williams threw the ball to Posey on the left baseline and he made the shot over the outstretched arms of Mike Miller.


San Antonio 100, Sacramento 98 -- The Kings kept the host Spurs scoreless for the first three minutes of the fourth while scoring eight points to get within one. But Bruce Bowen made a three-point basket and Tim Duncan followed with four more points to put the Spurs ahead, 97-92.

San Antonio’s Manu Ginobili, who has a bruised back, sat out his fourth game in a row.

Toronto 103, New York 100 -- Eddy Curry had 27 points, 11 in the final 4:49, but couldn’t prevent the Knicks from their fourth consecutive home loss. They opened a season-high six-game homestand by falling to 1-7 at Madison Square Garden.

Denver 121, Indiana 101 -- Carmelo Anthony scored a season-high 38 points to lead the host Nuggets. It was his sixth consecutive game of 30 or more points -- the second time he’s scored that many in six games in a row this season.


Chicago 112, Washington 94 -- The Wizards set a franchise record with their eighth consecutive road loss to start the season. The Bulls opened an eight-game homestand with their fourth win in a row.

Utah 109, Seattle 107 -- Mehmet Okur made a three-point basket with 1.6 seconds left to win it for the host Jazz. Ray Allen scored 20 of his 33 points in the fourth quarter, including a drive past Andrei Kirilenko for a layup with seven seconds left.

Milwaukee 115, Golden State 110 -- Mo Williams’ go-ahead jumper with 53 seconds left at Oakland helped the Bucks ruin Warriors Coach Don Nelson’s second attempt to become the second coach in NBA history with 1,200 victories.