CLEVELAND (AP)Donovan Mitchell scored a season-high 43 points and Jarrett Allen returned from injury to add 24, leading the Cleveland Cavaliers to a 116-102 win on Tuesday night over the Los Angeles Lakers in LeBron James’ only visit home this season.
With Anthony Davis missing the final three quarters because of illness, the Cavs improved to an NBA-leading 11-1 on their floor, their best start at home since 2015-16, when James led them a championship.
Mitchell, who has Cleveland fans dreaming of another title run, took over in the second half and scored 29 points with the kind of performance James did routinely during his 11 seasons for the Cavs.
With Cleveland leading by 12 in the fourth, Mitchell buried a 3-pointer from the left wing to finish the Lakers. After dropping the shot, the All-Star guard strutted around the Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse floor nodding his head as James helplessly watched.
Darius Garland added 21 points and 11 assists for Cleveland.
James finished with 21 points and 17 rebounds, losing for just the third time in 20 games against the Cavs.
MAVERICKS 116, NUGGETS 115
DENVER (AP) – Dorian Finney-Smith hit a go-ahead 3-pointer with 17.3 seconds remaining and Dallas rallied after squandering a late lead to beat Denver.
Nikola Jokic had a chance to tie the game with 12 seconds remaining, but missed the first of two free throws. Spencer Dinwiddie hit both free throws to help seal the win for the Mavericks.
Tim Hardaway Jr. scored a season-high 29 points and Luka Doncic recorded his 52nd career triple-double with 22 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds.
The Mavericks hardly looked weary as they played the second game of a back-to-back. They beat the Western Conference-leading Phoenix Suns the night before.
Aaron Gordon had 27 points, while Jokic added 19 points, eight assists and eight rebounds for the Nuggets, who dropped their third straight game on a night when they committed 17 turnovers.
PISTONS 116, HEAT 96
MIAMI (AP) – Bojan Bogdanovic scored 28 of his 31 points in the second half, Alec Burks added 18 and Detroit ran away in the final two quarters to beat Miami.
Saddiq Bey scored 14, Isaiah Stewart had 11 points and 11 rebounds and Cory Joseph also finished with 11 points for the Pistons, who trailed 50-47 at halftime – then outscored Miami 69-46 in the final two quarters.
It was Detroit’s biggest margin of victory this season. The Pistons had won only one game by more than seven points, that being a 128-114 triumph over Golden State on Oct. 30.
Tyler Herro led all scorers with a season high-tying 34 points for Miami, which has dropped three of its last four games. The Heat are off to an 11-14 start for the third time in the last five seasons.
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