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LeBron crowns the Kings with 51

By 03.14.09

LeBron (Dime 31)

Since we all remember LeBron‘s NBA debut, at Sacramento back in ’03, each time LBJ makes his annual trip to Arco Arena now, it’s like a yearly checkpoint to see where the uber-hyped high school phenom is at in his career. Judging by last night’s show, ‘Bron is doing alright. While his run of consecutive triple-doubles was stopped at three, LeBron dropped 51 points (16-30 FG, 4-11 3PA, 15-17 FT), nine assists and three blocks on the Kings in an overtime W … Kind of like the Lakers’ last couple of wins (in Houston and San Antonio), the Cavs have been staying out of the “L” column but still showing flaws along the way. Last night they were down 14 in the fourth quarter before rallying to force OT, reminiscent of earlier in the week when the Clippers had Cleveland down by as much as 17 in the fourth. Another area of concern that the LeBron-haters won’t let you forget: When LBJ had a chance to give the Cavs the lead with 24 seconds left, he bricked the second of two free throws … Classic Kevin Martin stat line: 34 points on nine shots (9-21 FG, 13-14 FT). K-Mart’s game is like your school loan; even if you tend to forget about it, it’s not going anywhere, then at the end of the day you’re still blown away when you check the numbers … Mike Brown is making progress. Whereas 99 percent of his on-court temper tantrums have something to do with defending LeBron, last night he went to bat for Mo Williams, tearing into the refs after Mo got clobbered in the second half on a drive. Maybe you just have to make an All-Star team before Brown will flip out on your behalf … It was the end of an era in Philly yesterday, as the old Spectrum saw its last game. The Sixers have been playing across the street at the Wachovia Center since 1996 (Iverson‘s rookie year), but they packed the old gym one last time — Dr. J, Moses and Bobby Jones were among the Philly legends in the building — and gave the fans a hell of a show in knocking off the Bulls … Ben Gordon hit the game-tying three with 36 seconds left, before Andre Iguodala split a pair of free throws to put the Sixers up one. The Dalembeast swatted Derrick Rose on the Bulls’ next possession, leading to a Thaddeus Young (31 pts) breakaway dunk, then Gordon had a three rattle in and out at the buzzer … Rose had a couple of insanely athletic plays: First he went baseline and caught a two-hand dunk where he was still going up as he dunked it, then later got a up-and-under reverse layup that he could have dunked easily on either side if he wanted to … Watching that game last night, we’re pretty sure nobody would have an objection if the Sixers re-did the Wachovia floor to look like the Spectrum, right? … Vince Carter
In the first half of Blazers/Nets, Joel Przybilla met Bobby Simmons at the rim on a dunk attempt and sent him packing. Not sure if that block had anything to do with Przybilla feeling bold enough to challenge Vince Carter in the second half, but that one ended up with Prz getting straddled — think T-Mac on Shawn Bradley — and smashed on … Jersey had a lead in the fourth quarter, Steve Blake gave Portland the lead on a three with about two minutes left, then assisted Nic Batum on the dagger three a few possessions later when he drove and drew three defenders, setting up Batum as the Nets’ D broke down and nobody knew who they were guarding … Two of the hottest teams in the NBA that nobody is talking about, the Rockets and Bobcats, met up in Charlotte. A couple plays after Ron Artest hit the go-ahead J with 22 seconds left, Houston was up by three on the ‘Cats last possession. Vlad Radmanovic got the inbounds and had a look at a deep three, but Artest closed on him and snatched the ball right out of his hands, then coasted in for a layup to ice it … Some big stat lines from Friday: Chris Paul had 30 points, nine dimes and four steals in a win over Milwaukee; Leon Powe posted 30 points, 11 boards and five blocks in a win over Memphis; Joe Johnson scored 30 in a win over Indiana; Antawn Jamison went for 36 points in a loss to Orlando; and Rip Hamilton had 24 points and 16 assists in a win over the Raptors, on the same day that longtime Pistons owner Bill Davidson passed away at 86 years old. Davidson was just inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame a few months ago, highlighting a career where he won championships with the Pistons, the WNBA’s Detroit Shock, and the NHL’s Tampa Bay Lightning … Some things don’t change. Even with the mess that’s been made of the Warriors since the ’07 playoffs, Nellie still has Dallas’ number. Handing the Mavs a crucial loss last night, GS played one of their best, most focused games of the season, getting 31 points and 10 dimes from S-Jack and 29 points and 11 boards from Monta Ellis … Even with Corey Maggette out (sinus infection) and Andris Biedrins leaving in the first quarter (ankle), the Warriors were still too physical for Dallas. Ronny Turiaf (12 rebs, 5 blks) came in for Biedrins and beasted the Mavs’ front line by himself … The play of the game (maybe the night) came from the Mavs, though. In the second quarter, Jason Terry drove past Monta and went up on Anthony Randolph. Taking a bump from Randolph in mid-air, Terry actually gained a couple of inches on his vertical after the contact and crammed on the rookie. The Mavs’ bench exploded; James Singleton got so pumped he looked like he was about to soil himself … We’re out like sleeping on Vince …


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