CHICAGO (Sporting Alert) — LeBron James scored 36 points and eight rebounds to lead the Cleveland Cavaliers to a 114-108 overtime victory over the Chicago Bulls on Friday night.
James, who also finished with four assists, four steals and one block in the win, scored eight of his total points in the overtime period after both teams ended regulation time locked at 98-98.
“It was an opportunity to go out and redeem ourselves, and I was happy with the outcome,” James said.
Kyrie Irving scored 23 points, Kevin Love collected 16 points, 16 rebounds and four steals and Tristan Thompson added 16 points and 13 boards off the bench for the Cavs, which rebounded from losing to the New York Knicks on their opening night fixture.
Thompson was praised by pundits and several commentators for his efforts on the night, and his teammates were quite impressed as well.
“It’s a true testament to how hard Tristan works,” Kyrie said. “That’s something that he gives us.
“He gives us energy, and that’s what we want him to do every single night. I know he’s capable of doing it.
“For us, it just adds another dimension for our team to get more possessions.”
Chicago Bulls point guard Derrick Rose was forced to leave the game in the third quarter after he suffered a sprained left ankle.
Rose left the game after playing 25-minutes and scoring 20 points, but he said it wasn’t a serious injury.
“It’s not that serious,” Rose told reporters. “It’s not. I am working around,” he added with a smile on his face.
Kirk Hinrich also scored 20 points for Chicago, with Pau Gasol adding 15 points, nine rebounds and six blocks and Mike Dunleavy finishing with 14 points, nine boards and eight assists in the defeat.
Blake Griffin scored a game high 39 points to go along with his seven rebounds to lead the Clippers (2-0). Jamal Crawford added 22 points and five assists, while J.J. Redick, who shot just 3 of 9 from the field got 15 points in the victory.
“Just carrying over from last year, and all the work I put in this summer, it’s confidence-building,” Griffin said.
“I mean, when you’ve deposited a lot of money, you feel good about writing checks. And that’s kind of what I’m doing now.
“I’ve put the time in on this, but I still have to do the same things that make us successful.”
Chris Paul, who scored 12 points and dished out 10 assists and DeAndre Jordan, who had 11 points and 13 rebounds, finished with double-doubles for the LA Clippers.
Jordan Hill led the way for the Lakers with 23 points with Kobe Bryant finishing with 21 points and seven assists in the defeat.
Memphis Grizzlies 97 (2-0) – Indiana Pacers 89 (1-1)
Cleveland Cavaliers 114 (1-1) – Chicago Bulls 108 (1-1) (F/OT)
Milwaukee Bucks 93 (1-1) – Philadelphia 76ers 81 (0-2)
Phoenix Suns 94 (2-0) – San Antonio Spurs 89 (1-1)
Sacramento Kings 103 (1-1) – Portland Trail Blazers 94 (1-1)
Los Angeles Clippers 118 (2-0) – Los Angeles Lakers 111 (0-3)