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FULL HIGHLIGHTS: Irving Scores Career High 55 as Cavs Win 8th Straight 99-94

On a night when LeBron James sat our with a sore wrist and only two of their players shot 50% or better from the field, the Cleveland Cavaliers defeated the Portland Trailblazers 99-94 for their eight consecutive victory. The main reason for tonight’s victory was a Cavalier named Kyrie Irving, who exploded for a career high and an NBA season high 55 points tonight.

Here are the highlight’s from tonight’s incredible game:

The Cavaliers led from the opening minute of the game and didn’t relinquish the lead the whole first half. In fact, thanks to a hot start from Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving, Cleveland took a 12-point lead just before the end of the first quarter. They continued with the same intensity and extended their lead to 14 right before halftime when the Blazers cut it to a 54-44 Cavalier advantage. Irving had 28 at halftime with his incredible shooting displayed on this shot chart:

The Blazers crept closer in the second half getting within three points in the third, but the Cavs withstood the Blazers’ run thanks to eight quick points at the end of the third by Irving. Portland was able to take a three-point lead during a Cavalier two-minute scoring drought with less than three minutes to go in the game. But the Cavaliers played lock-down defense the rest of the way on the perimeter and double-teamed LaMarcus Aldridge in the post. Down 92-89, Irving received a hand-off pass from Kevin Love for a three-pointer that tied the game. After getting a stop, Mozgov was pushed on a loose ball and knocked down two free throws to give the Cavs a 94-92 lead. Once Aldridge came down and hit a pair of free throws to knot the game up at 94 apiece, Kyrie used most of the shot-clock and didn’t even call for a screen before knocking down a dagger three-pointer in Nicolas Batum’s face to give the Cavs the victory:

Despite the double teaming and strong low-post defense, LaMarcus Aldridge scored 38 points to go with 11 rebounds. Damian Lillard had 14 points and Wesley Matthews finished with 11 as Portland shot 43.8% on the night and 10-31 from downtown.

The night belonged the Cavaliers and more importantly Kyrie Irving, who scored a career high 55 points on 17-36 shooting, including 11-19 from the three-point line. Mozgov scored 12 points and 10 rebounds along with two clutch free throws down the stretch. J.R. Smith had 11 points and Kevin Love struggled scoring 10 points on 3-15 shooting, but did have 12 rebounds.

The Cavs, now 27-20, will try to extend their winning streak to nine games against the Sacramento Kings at home on Friday night. The Kings come in with a record of 16-28 and 6-13 on the road.

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