LeBron James became the youngest player to score 15,000 career points, breaking Kobe Bryant’s mark by more than two years, and the Cleveland Cavaliers pulled away to beat the Bulls, 92-85, last night in Chicago for their 12th win in 13 games.
James scored 13 of his 29 points in the fourth quarter, giving him 15,026 in his career, and had 11 rebounds. He scored 7 straight late in the game as Cleveland increased its lead to 10, sending the Bulls to their 10th straight loss.
James reached the milestone at 25 years, 79 days, and he did it in his 540th game. Bryant was 27 years, 136 days and playing his 657th game when he did it for the Lakers.
Mo Williams added 18 points for the Cavaliers, who continued to roll without the injured Shaquille O’Neal. They’re 10-1 with their big man recovering from a thumb injury.
Lakers 104, Timberwolves 96 — Kobe Bryant had 22 points and a season-high 13 assists as host Los Angeles sent Minnesota to its 12th straight loss.
Lamar Odom scored 11 of his 18 points in the fourth quarter, and Pau Gasol added 17 points and 14 rebounds to help the Lakers win their sixth in a row.
The defending NBA champions beat the Timberwolves for the 10th straight time despite losing injury-plagued center Andrew Bynum, who strained his left Achilles’ tendon early in the third quarter.
Jonny Flynn scored 20 points for the Timberwolves, who have lost 18 of 19. Kevin Love added 19 points and 11 assists.
Hawks 93, Bobcats 92 — Joe Johnson sank a fallaway jumper over three Charlotte defenders just before time expired to lift host Atlanta to an overtime victory.
Johnson had 18 points, including 16 in the fourth quarter and overtime. He made his winning shot about 2 feet inside the 3-point line.
Raymond Felton’s basket gave the Bobcats a 92-91 lead with four seconds left in overtime.
Bucks 114, Kings 108 — Brandon Jennings scored 35 points, hit a career-high 8 3-pointers, and added 8 assists in visiting Milwaukee’s double-overtime victory over Sacramento.
Kings rookie Tyreke Evans was hit in the mouth late in regulation on a loose-ball situation and didn’t return. Evans, who may have sustained a concussion, had 15 points, 4 rebounds, and 4 assists.
Spurs 147, Warriors 116 — Manu Ginobili scored 23 points and host San Antonio throttled Golden State, scoring the most points under Gregg Popovich since he took over as coach in 1996.
Monta Ellis scored 39 points, and Corey Maggette had 30 for the Warriors.
Suns 110, Jazz 100 — Amar’e Stoudemire scored the first 11 points for host Phoenix en route to a season-high 44 in a victory over Utah that pulled it within a game of the Jazz for fourth place in the West.
Stoudemire made 14 of 16 shots and 16 of 18 free throws.
Thunder 115, Raptors 89 — Kevin Durant scored 31 points, going 17 of 18 from the free throw line, to spark Oklahoma City to it sixth win in seven games with a rout of host Toronto.
Jeff Green added 25 points and Russell Westbrook had 11 points and 10 assists for the Thunder.
Trail Blazers 76, Wizards 74 — Brandon Roy rebounded from a cold spell to hit a 22-foot jumper with 0.9 seconds left and Portland defeated visiting Washington.
Pacers 106, Pistons 102 — Danny Granger scored 29 points in his return from a cheek injury, and Troy Murphy had 20 points to power host Indiana.