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Hard-working LeBron still hungers to add to legacy

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Monday, May 8th, 2017

 

May 3, 2017; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) reacts in the third quarter against the Toronto Raptors in game two of the second round of the 2017 NBA Playoffs at Quicken Loans Arena. David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

The remarkable workload that LeBron James has endured over the last seven seasons has been unlike any other in NBA history and the greatest player on the planet remains as hungry as ever to continue winning titles.

James, who entered the league out of high school in 2003, has long since secured his status as a surefire Hall of Famer but the Cleveland Cavaliers forward still shifts into a higher gear come playoff time.

“It’s the best part of the year. This is, they say, where legends are made,” James, a three-time NBA champion, said on Friday in Toronto where his Cavs beat the Raptors 115-94 for a 3-0 lead in the best-of-seven Eastern Conference semi-final.

“I am just trying to put myself in a position where I can be, I guess, remembered when I am done playing.”

James had a team-high 35 points, leaving him 176 points shy of surpassing Michael Jordan as the all-time playoff scoring leader, as Cleveland improved to 7-0 in the 2017 postseason.

With the victory, the 32-year-old James also moved five wins away from reaching his seventh straight NBA Finals dating back to his time with the Miami Heat from 2010-2014.

His current streak of NBA Finals appearances is already a total unmatched since the Boston Celtics dynasty of the 1960s.

Those Celtics, however, did not have to log the same mileage as James since the bulk of their reign came during a period when the NBA had fewer than 10 teams, meaning fewer playoff rounds.

While a dominant James has made Cleveland’s run in the playoffs look easy, he credits past postseason failures for preparing him.

James reached his first NBA Finals in 2007 as a 22-year-old with the Cavs and after being swept by a veteran San Antonio Spurs team declared that he had to be “10 times better.”

He eventually left for Miami, saying he needed to learn how to win, and along with a cast of All-Stars won two NBA titles in four seasons before returning to Cleveland.

“At 22 I wasn’t mentally ready for this. You dream about it, you want it but you don’t have the experience to actually know,” said James, whose Cavaliers can wrap up the series on Sunday in Toronto.

“Mentally I had never been a part of it so I didn’t know exactly how much commitment and how much sacrifice that you got to make not only for yourself but for your team.

“But without that experience I wouldn’t be where I am today.” — By Frank Pingue | TORONTO

(Editing by Larry Fine)

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James sinks buzzer-beater to lift Cavs over Timberwolves

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Thursday, February 8th, 2018

Feb 7, 2018; Cleveland, OH, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) throws a pass past Minnesota Timberwolves guard Jeff Teague (0) in the second quarter at Quicken Loans Arena. Mandatory Credit: David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

(Reuters) – LeBron James resurrected Cleveland’s stagnant season, for one night at least, when he hit a game-winning buzzer-beater to lift the Cavaliers to a 140-138 overtime home win over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday.

After Cleveland called timeout in the backcourt with one second left, James caught a long pass near the foul line.

Under pressure from Minnesota’s Jimmy Butler, the four-times league MVP spun around and launched a fadeaway jumper from the top of the key over the top of the lunging defender.

The ball caught nothing but net, sending the crowd into delirium as the team’s recent woes were temporarily forgotten.

“Coach (Tyronn) Lue called up a great play, Jeff Green gave me a heck of a pass and I just trusted my instincts and let it go,” James said in a courtside interview.

The win helped ease the pressure on James and a team that was whipped by the lowly Orlando Magic the previous day.

“It was a great win for us. We needed this after that tough loss last night to Orlando,” James continued.

“They (Minnesota) shot 58 percent from the field and we were still able to get a win. We played Cavaliers basketball tonight and that’s all you could ask.”

The win lifted the Cavaliers to 31-22, seven games behind the East-leading Boston Celtics.

The Cavaliers have struggled this season after making the NBA finals for the past three years, beating the Golden State Warriors once and losing to the same team the other two times.

Reporting by Andrew Both in Adelaide, South Australia; Editing by John O’Brien

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James takes another shot at Trump during Washington visit

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Tuesday, December 19th, 2017

Dec 17, 2017; Washington, DC, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) celebrates with forward Kevin Love (0) against the Washington Wizards during the second half at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

(Reuters) – LeBron James used a visit to Washington on Sunday to express his continued displeasure at Donald Trump, without once mentioning the United States president by name.

James took the court wearing one white and one black shoe for the Cleveland Cavaliers against the Washington Wizards in an NBA game in the national capital.

Both shoes had the word “EQUALITY” stitched in capital letters on the back, and they got the attention he apparently was seeking.

“Obviously, we know where we are right now and we know who’s at the helm here,” the four-times NBA most valuable player told reporters after the game, played barely a mile from the White House.

“Equality is all about understanding our rights, understanding what we stand for and how powerful we are as men, and as women, black or white or Hispanic.”

James, a frequent and outspoken critic of Trump, backed losing Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election.

He has continued his attacks on Trump in the 13 months since the election, saying that the president does not understand that many children look to their leader for guidance and encouragement.

James spoke on Sunday after compiling his third straight triple-double — 20 points, 12 rebounds and 15 assists — as the Cavaliers beat the Wizards 106-99.

“No matter your race, this is a beautiful country and we’re never going to let one person dictate how beautiful and how powerful we are,” he said.

Reporting by Andrew Both in Cary, North Carolina; editing by Amlan Chakraborty

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Highlights of Monday’s NBA games

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Tuesday, November 14th, 2017

Nov 13, 2017; New York, NY, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers small forward LeBron James (23) passes the ball out of traffic during the second quarter against the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden. Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

(The Sports Xchange) – Highlights from National Basketball Association games on Monday:

Cavaliers 104, Knicks 101

LeBron James had 23 points and came one rebound short of a triple-double as the Cleveland Cavaliers stormed back from a 24-point deficit to defeat the host New York Knicks 104-101 on Monday night at Madison Square Garden.

James hit a step-back, 27-foot 3-pointer to put the Cavs up by three with 1:23 left in the game, the final dagger in an 8-0 Cleveland run to complete a rousing comeback. James finished with 12 assists and nine rebounds, and Kyle Korver added 21 points for the Cavs.

New York led by as much as 24 in the third quarter before heading into the fourth up 15 and still led by double figures with 6:53 remaining. Cleveland put on the defensive clamps late, though, and the Cavs hit four 3-pointers in the last 4:35, including two by Korver, to upend the previously hot Knicks.

Warriors 110, Magic 100

Playing without superstar Stephen Curry, Golden State went on a trademark third-quarter surge to defeat Orlando for its seventh straight win.

Curry sat out with a right thigh contusion, and his replacement, Shaun Livingston, rose to the challenge with 16 points and six assists. Kevin Durant led the Warriors with 21 points, eight assists and seven rebounds. Draymond Green had 20 points.

76ers 109, Clippers 105

Joel Embiid scored 32 points, and Robert Covington added 31, including two key fourth-quarter 3-pointers, as Philadelphia beat Los Angeles to end a two-game losing streak.

Ben Simmons added 22 points and 12 rebounds, and Embiid had a game-high 16 boards.

Timberwolves 109, Jazz 98

Karl-Anthony Towns scored 24 points and collected 13 rebounds while Jimmy Butler added 21 points and 10 assists to help Minnesota overwhelm Utah.

Taj Gibson also finished with a double-double for Minnesota, adding 15 points and 10 rebounds. Jeff Teague chipped in 22 points.

Wizards 110, Kings 92

John Wall scored 21 points and continued his torrid 3-point shooting against Sacramento as Washington won its third consecutive game.

Marcin Gortat had 18 and Otto Porter 15 for the Wizards, who matched their longest winning streak of the season and closed their four-game homestand at 3-1. Washington opened the season 3-0, but lost five of seven, including a loss to the one-win Dallas Mavericks on Nov. 7.

Bucks 110, Grizzlies 103

John Henson scored eight of his 17 points in the fourth quarter and Milwaukee rallied down the stretch for the win.

Tyreke Evans scored 14 of his 27 points in the fourth quarter for the Grizzlies, but Memphis couldn’t hold off Milwaukee, which won its third straight.

Pelicans 106, Hawks 105

Darius Miller hit four 3-pointers in the final 5:45 and scored 14 of his 21 points in the fourth-quarter run to lift New Orleans to the win.

Guard E‘Twaun Moore was the Pelicans’ leading scorer with 24 points and DeMarcus Cousins added 22 points, 16 rebounds and seven assists.

Lakers 100, Suns 93

Jordan Clarkson scored 25 points in 25 minutes off the bench and Corey Brewer and Kyle Kuzma combined for 13 points in the fourth quarter to lift Los Angeles past Phoenix.

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope scored 15 points and Brook Lopez added 15 points and 10 rebounds for the Lakers, who ended a three-game losing streak in a game where neither team had a double-digit lead until 2:30 remained.

Trail Blazers 101, Nuggets 97

Jusuf Nurkic and CJ McCollum scored 17 points apiece and Damian Lillard chipped in 15 points, seven assists, five rebounds and four steals to lead Portland past Denver.

Portland shot a season-best 52.1 percent from the field and held Denver to a season-low 35.7 percent. It was the poorest shooting game by a Portland opponent all season.

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