Basketball

Irving stars in Celtics' 16th straight win

All-Star guard scores 47 points to secure Boston's comeback victory

Kyrie Irving laid on a 47-point masterclass to give the Boston Celtics a 16th straight win as the Cleveland Cavaliers thrashed the Detroit Pistons yesterday morning (Singapore time) to continue their revival.

Irving was in dazzling form for Boston as they rallied from a 10-point deficit in the fourth quarter to overhaul the Dallas Mavericks 110-102 in overtime.

His haul included five three-pointers and three rebounds as Boston came back from 89-79 down with five minutes left in the final quarter to win.

Boston improved to 16-2 with the victory to head the Eastern Conference. Dallas fell to 3-15 with the loss.

Irving delivered 10 of his points in overtime, single-handedly pulling Boston clear of Dallas in the decisive phase of the game.

It was the fourth-highest scoring game of Irving's career and helped Boston tie the franchise's fourth-longest winning streak.

Elsewhere, Cleveland sent a message to their rivals in the Eastern Conference with a ruthless walloping of Detroit.

The Cavs' 116-88 blowout was the clearest sign yet that the 2016 NBA champions have shaken off their early-season problems.

Cleveland have now won five games in a row and have improved to 10-7.

Detroit, who entered the game with an impressive 11-5 record, were put firmly in their place by a Cavaliers side who were determined to make a statement.

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    Kyrie Irving is the first Boston Celtics player to score over 45 points and notch more than five assists in a game since Paul Pierce did so 11 years ago.

Kevin Love led the scoring with 19 points, 11 rebounds and four assists while LeBron James had 18 points and eight rebounds in 27 minutes.

Jae Crowder had 18 points with Jose Calderon adding 14.

James saluted the way Cleveland maintained their scoring momentum.

"I just wanted to keep the pedal down," James said of the big win. "We haven't had a win like this in a very long time. We come out sometimes in the third quarter and have a slow start and teams get back into it.

"But today, we just kept it going. That's a pretty big step for us." - AFP

OTHER RESULTS

Charlotte 118 Minnesota 102, Detroit 88 Cleveland 116, Orlando 97 Indiana 105, Philadelphia 107 Utah 86, NY Knicks 107 LA Clippers 85, Memphis 92 Portland 100, Milwaukee 88 Washington 99, New Orleans 114 Oklahoma 107, San Antonio 96 Atlanta 85, Sacramento 98 Denver 114

Basketball