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Find out the scoop on the CAVS from award-winning sports writer Bob Finnan.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

LBJ's heroics

Cavs blog by Bob Finnan

All-Star forward LeBron James' clutch 19-foot, step-back jumper over Ronny Turiaf at the buzzer shocked the Warriors, 106-105, on Friday at Oracle Arena.

It capped off a fabulous night by James, who ended with 32 points, nine rebounds, eight assists and three steals. He made 10 of 24 shots.

Swingman Stephen Jackson had given the Warriors the lead with a 22-footer over James with 6.4 seconds left.

The Cavs (33-8), missing two starters, struggled against the Warriors (13-31).

They fell into the trap of trying to beat the Warriors at their own game, which is galloping up and down the court. Everything is a fastbreak for Coach Don Nelson's team. It's common for them to fire up shots just seconds into the shot clock. They do have a great scoring team - they were ranked No. 2 in the NBA in scoring behind the Los Angeles Lakers - and a plethora of options.

The way to beat them is to play the game at your pace. The Cavs do like to run on occasions, but they also must adhere to their halfcourt offensive principles. That's a foreign thought to the Warriors.

The Cavs are now 2-1 on the 4-game West Coast trip. They can cap off a highly successful trip with a win in Utah tonight. It won't be easy since it's the last game of the West Coast trip, in addition to it being the tail end of a back-to-back set.

But don't give up hope. As you've probably noticed, this is a special season, and one that could end up in the NBA Finals.


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