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Marbury, Hardaway little help as Knicks fall to Cavs

By wire services
Published January 7, 2004

CLEVELAND - Stephon Marbury didn't do much for the new-look Knicks after being cleared to play just 30 minutes before tipoff, and LeBron James' 10 assists and Zydrunas Ilgauskas' 24 points led the Cavaliers over New York 107-96 Tuesday night.

Marbury, traded from Phoenix to New York along with Penny Hardaway a day earlier, had eight points and eight assists in the Knicks' third straight loss.

James had 14 points on a poor shooting night, but his assists tied his career high. Eric Williams hit baskets at several key points and finished with 22.

For much of the game, New York resembled a team that hadn't practiced together. Marbury and Hardaway were forced to sit out the morning shootaround because the players traded to Phoenix hadn't completed their physical exams. They received clearance from the league just before tipoff.

Hardaway was 3-for-9 for six points. Keith Van Horn led New York with 20 points and Allan Houston had 18.

The Knicks shot just 41 percent, left the Cavaliers wide open for jump shots and committed costly fouls. The Cavaliers capitalized by shooting 87 percent from the free throw line and nearly 48 percent from the floor.

PACERS 114, MAGIC 107: Jermaine O'Neal had 25 points, nine rebounds and four blocks to help host Indiana overcome a 43-point performance by Tracy McGrady.

McGrady made eight 3-pointers and shot 14-of-27, but didn't have support like O'Neal, one of six Pacers in double figures.

The 114 points were a season high for the East-leading Pacers, who won their sixth in a row.

McGrady dominated the opening minutes of the second quarter, scoring 15 of Orlando's first 17 points, including 13 in a row. After his free throws with seven minutes to play brought the Magic within 43-37, the Pacers responded with runs of 17-6 and 8-0.

It was more of the same in the third quarter. McGrady scored Orlando's first 12 points to pull the Magic within six. He went scoreless the final seven minutes, however, and the Pacers took a 94-81 lead into the fourth.

NETS 92, CLIPPERS 75: A blowout victory for host New Jersey was marred by a blowup between Kenyon Martin and Corey Maggette.

Jason Kidd had his second straight game over 30 points (32) and the Nets held Los Angeles to a season-low 28 first-half points. It was the Nets' 13th win in 16 games and fourth straight.

Martin and Maggette were ejected after exchanging punches with 7:08 left in the third quarter, and both face automatic suspensions. Martin committed a hard foul on Maggette on a drive to the basket, Maggette shoved Martin to the court, and Martin got up and went after Maggette.

WOLVES 106, LAKERS 90: Latrell Sprewell scored 30 while keeping Kobe Bryant in check as host Minnesota won its 13th game in the past 16 and handed injury-plagued L.A. its seventh loss in 10 games. Shaquille O'Neal sat out his second straight game with a strained right calf. Bryant had only six of his 20 points in the second half. Kevin Garnett added 26 points and 18 rebounds for Minnesota and Sam Cassell scored 19 of his 26 in the first half.

SPURS 94, WIZARDS 72: Host San Antonio outshot an opponent from the free throw line for the first time in 13 games for its 15th win in the past 16 games. The Spurs were 12-for-15 after going 77-of-138 in the previous five games. Tim Duncan and Tony Parker led San Antonio with 16 points apiece.

KINGS 105, HAWKS 89: Peja Stojakovic scored 28 and Brad Miller had 20 and 10 rebounds in Sacramento's fourth straight victory and its 26th consecutive home win over East teams.

GRIZZLIES-BLAZERS: A winter storm forced postponement of Tuesday night's game. It has been rescheduled for March 3.

CELTICS: Forward Vin Baker was suspended for three games after the team said he failed to comply with his alcohol treatment program. The team said it was notified by a doctor jointly chosen by the player and team to oversee the program. Baker got off to a strong start this season after missing most of the last one, but recently lost his starting job.

JAZZ: Coach Jerry Sloan returned after missing one game to be with his wife, Bobbye, who has been sick for several weeks with flulike symptoms.

MAVERICKS: Center Mamadou N'Diaye was signed to a 10-day contract to bolster Dallas' undersized inside game. The 7-foot, 255-pounder has played only 30 games since Denver made him the 26th overall pick of the 2000 draft.

RAPTORS: The team declined to sign Stanley Roberts to a 10-day contract after working him out. The 7-foot, 300-pound center hasn't played since 1999 when the league suspended him, citing use of an amphetamine-based drug. He was reinstated last January.

SUNS: Guard Charlie Ward was waived one day after being acquired in an eight-player trade with the Knicks. The former Heisman Trophy winner from Florida State had been with the Knicks his entire 10-year career. He had a clause in his contract allowing it to be bought out before Jan. 10.

[Last modified January 7, 2004, 01:33:45]


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