Article

Irving wins on Cavs comeback, bragging rights for Knicks

12 December 2012 07:02

Kyrie Irving's return helped the Cleveland Cavaliers inflict more pain on the Lakers as the Knicks edged out the Nets in the New York derby.

Irving may have missed the last 11 games with a broken finger, but he came back to the court in fine style on Tuesday with a double-double, scoring 28 points and providing 11 assists as he led the Cavaliers to a 100-94 victory over the L.A. Lakers.

The Lakers fell behind by 16 points just after half-time but rallied strongly, as Kobe Bryant scored 16 of his 42 points during the last quarter.

But his efforts and a double-double from Dwight Howard (19 points, 20 rebounds) were not enough to get the Lakers over the line as they slumped to their eighth loss in the last 11 games.

The New York Knicks, meanwhile, continued their march toward the Atlantic Division title, rallying from 17 points down to defeat the Brooklyn Nets 100-97.

In a dramatic encounter, Carmelo Anthony registered a season-high 45 points, although his efforts were overshadowed somewhat by Jason Kidd's winning shot as he nailed a three-pointer with 24 seconds remaining to take the match.

The result sees New York climb four games clear of Philadelphia in their division and five ahead of the Nets.

Elsewhere the Central-leading Chicago Bulls left themselves vulnerable to second-placed Milwaukee Bucks as they lost 94-18 to Pacific Division leaders the L.A. Clippers.

The Washington Wizards may be sitting at the base of the Southeast Division but they still had reason to celebrate on Tuesday night as they produced their first win on the road in a 77-70 victory over the New Orleans Hornets.

And lastly, a dominant 31-17 second quarter from the Denver Nuggets proved enough to get the Colorado side over the line against the Detroit Pistons, in a hard-fought 101-94 affair.

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