Published: Friday, November 23, 2007
LeBron's 45 points leads Cavaliers' win
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) With his defending Eastern Conference champions looking rather ordinary so far this season, LeBron James has decided to take matters into his own hands.
Barely breaking a sweat, James had 45 points, eight rebounds and five assists to carry the Cleveland Cavaliers to a 97-86 victory over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Wednesday night.
It's been a breathtaking four-game stretch for King James, who topped 40 points for the second time in three games and is averaging 39.5 points, 9.5 rebounds and 9.5 assists in the previous four to get the Cavs (6-6) back to .500.
"I don't know how he keeps doing what he does," coach Mike Brown said. "I'm watching him, and I get exhausted. That's how good it is to be able to do that night after night after night."
Drew Gooden added 17 points and nine rebounds and Dwayne Jones chipped in 10 rebounds off the bench for Cleveland, but this was the LeBron Show from start to finish.
"I wasn't forcing anything," James said. "I was just taking what was there."
James was on a roll from the start, scoring 15 points on 6-for-9 shooting in the first quarter to help the Cavs take an early lead. He added 17 more in the fourth to keep the Wolves at bay, dropping them to 1-8 to start the season.
"We've got guys [who], when we get punched in the mouth, we quit, we stop playing," Wolves coach Randy Wittman said. "Whether it hits or doesn't hit, we have to throw something back."
Al Jefferson had 30 points and eight rebounds for the Timberwolves, who threatened in the fourth quarter before James put the game away with a stunning two-minute haymaker.
"He knows when he needs to step up and do his thing," Brown said. "And he did it tonight."
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