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Friday, March 19, 2010

Cavs clinch division

CLEVELAND (AP) The Cavaliers clinched their second straight outright Central Division championship Wednesday night — and Mo Williams went home disappointed.

News photo
Sure shot: Toronto's Chris Bosh prepares to shoot over Atlanta's Al Horford on Wednesday night. The Raptors beat the Hawks 106-105. AP PHOTO

LeBron James had 32 points, nine rebounds and nine assists in Cleveland's 99-94 victory over the Indiana Pacers. With the win, Cleveland (54-15) became the first team this season to clinch a division title.

Williams spent last summer and the early part of this season trying to cherish the little things along Cleveland's bid to win an NBA championship. The first milestone passed by Wednesday without him realizing it.

"We have to cherish these moments and celebrate these moments," Williams said. "Our goal (last year) was so focused on a championship, we looked past clinching the division, clinching the playoffs and clinching home-court advantage. All that makes the main goal that much sweeter.

"That's kind of funny that we didn't come in here and acknowledge it. I'm kind of disappointed in that."

James made sure that was the only reason to go home disappointed, taking over late after Indiana cut an 18-point lead in the fourth quarter to one.

James had six points, two blocks, two steals and an assist in the final four minutes, including a nifty dunk behind his head after catching an alley-oop pass from Anderson Varejao. James fell a rebound and an assist shy of his second triple-double in two nights.

Mavericks 113, Bulls 106

In Dallas, Caron Butler scored 27 points, Dirk Nowitzki had 26, and J.J. Barea scored 10 straight when things tightened up in the fourth quarter for the Mavericks.

Bobcats 100, Thunder 92

In Charlotte, Stephen Jackson scored 18 of his 20 points in the second half and the Bobcats rallied to beat Oklahoma City to give Michael Jordan a victory in his first game as majority owner.

Rockets 107, Grizzlies 94

In Houston, Aaron Brooks set a Rockets record by hitting seven 3-pointers without a miss and scored 31 points.

Magic 110, Spurs 84

In Orlando, Vince Carter had 24 points and eight assists, and the Magic smothered San Antonio star Tim Duncan.

Celtics 109, Knicks 97

In Boston, Paul Pierce scored 29 points, Kevin Garnett had 22 and the Celtics cruised to their third straight lopsided victory at home.

Jazz 122, Timberwolves 100

In Salt Lake City, Paul Millsap had 21 points and 11 rebounds, Carlos Boozer added 19 points and 11 rebounds and Utah kept pace in the Western Conference.

Raptors 106, Hawks 105

In Toronto, Chris Bosh hit a 5-meter jumper with 2.1 seconds left and the Raptors beat Atlanta to end a five-game losing streak.

Warriors 131, Hornets 121

In Oakland, Calif., Monta Ellis had 28 points and tied his career high with 13 assists, Anthony Tolliver had a career-high 30 points and Golden State overcame a 21-point deficit to beat New Orleans.

76ers 108, Nets 97

In Philadelphia, Andre Iguodala scored 20 points, Jrue Holiday added 19 points, seven rebounds and seven assists to help the Sixers snap a five-game losing streak.

Clippers 101, Bucks 93

In Los Angeles, Chris Kaman had 20 points and seven rebounds, Drew Gooden added 16 points and 11 rebounds and the Clippers snapped an eight-game losing streak.

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