LOS ANGELES—The Portland Trail Blazers crushed LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers 105-76 on a topsy-turvy Saturday in the NBA that saw the Philadelphia 76ers notch their second win of the season.
In Portland, Allen Crabbe scored 21 of his career-high 26 points in the first half to put the Trail Blazers on the road to ending a five-game losing streak.
“Anybody see that coming?” asked Portland coach Terry Stotts. “That’s one of the things I love about the NBA. Anything can happen.”
Guard CJ McCollum had 16 points and six assists for Portland, who held Cleveland’s “King” James to just 12 points—which matched his season low.
James missed his first four shots and had just six points by halftime.
Kevin Love had 13 points for the Cavaliers, with Australia’s Matthew Dellavedova and Richard Jefferson contributing 10 points apiece. The Cleveland team was coming off an 89-83 loss to Golden State in Oakland, in a Christmas rematch of the NBA Finals won by the Warriors.
Portland never trailed after the opening minute and led by 29 at halftime.
Shortly after a McCollum free throw midway through third put Portland up 78-46, Cavs coach David Blatt pulled his starters for the remainder of the game.
“Throw it in the trash,” James said of the evening’s work. “Nothing good we did tonight.”
New arrival Ish Smith, playing his first game with the Philadelphia 76ers, had 14 points and five assists while directing the league’s stragglers to their first road win of the season -- a 111-104 triumph over the Suns in Phoenix that put Philadelphia’s record at 2-30.
“I think everybody can see how dynamic a player Ish is,” 76ers coach Brett Brown said of the point guard acquired from New Orleans on Thursday. “Giving a player of that caliber the ball at the end of the game was great for us.”
Smith’s finger roll gave the 76ers a 108-100 lead with 1:52 remaining, and the Suns never got the deficit below six points from there.
Guard Isaiah Canaan scored 22 points and reserve guard Nik Stauskas had 17 for Philadelphia, whose only other win was a 103-91 victory against the visiting Los Angeles Lakers on December 1.
Brandon Knight scored 21 points for the Suns, who lost point guard and leading scorer Eric Bledsoe to a left knee sprain in the second quarter. The Suns have now lost four straight and six of their last seven.
“It’s pretty embarrassing, point blank, period,” Suns forward PJ Tucker said.
There were no surprises in San Antonio, where Kawhi Leonard scored 20 points and the Spurs improved to 17-0 at home with a 101-86 victory over the Denver Nuggets.
The Spurs are off to the best home start for a Western Conference team since the 1988-89 Lakers won their first 17.
Their club record home winning streak is now at 26 games dating back to last season.
COMMENT DISCLAIMER: Reader comments posted on this Web site are not in any way endorsed by Manila Standard. Comments are views by manilastandard.net readers who exercise their right to free expression and they do not necessarily represent or reflect the position or viewpoint of manilastandard.net. While reserving this publication’s right to delete comments that are deemed offensive, indecent or inconsistent with Manila Standard editorial standards, Manila Standard may not be held liable for any false information posted by readers in this comments section.