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LeBron follows Kobe with 52 at MSG
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Two days after Kobe Bryant scored the most points in a game at Madison Square Garden (MSG), LeBron James lit up the New York scoreboard with 52 of his own to lead Cleveland to a 107-102 win over the Knicks on Wednesday.

Lakers guard Kobe Bryant scored 61 against the Knicks on Monday, but while the Cavaliers' James was shy of that points mark, he posted a triple-double by adding 11 assists and 10 rebounds.

The 52 points was the third-highest scored by a visiting player at MSG, and James joined Michael Jordan as the only two players with multiple 50-point games in the famous arena.

The triple-double, the 21st of his career, also made James the first player to achieve the feat while scoring 50 points since Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in 1975.

"You saw every phase of my game tonight," James said. "Any time you can be put in a class with a guy like Michael Jordan or Kareem it means a lot."

The Cleveland forward scored 20 points in the first quarter and had 28 by halftime as the Cavaliers improved to 39-9 on the season, tied for second best record in the league with the Lakers.

James, the early favorite to win the NBA's MVP award, will face off with the reigning award winner in Bryant when Los Angeles visits Cleveland on Sunday.

Lakers 115, Raptors 107

At Toronto, Bryant pumped in 36 points just two days after his record New York effort to carry the Los Angeles Lakers to a hard fought 115-107 road win over the Toronto Raptors on Wednesday.

Coming off scoring 61 points against the New York Knicks in Madison Square Garden on Monday - the most ever scored in the building - Bryant tallied 10 fourth-quarter points to rally the Lakers to their fourth straight win.

Bryant added nine rebounds and five assists, and made a 16-foot jumper with 23 seconds left to seal the victory.

"It took us three quarters to get used to their style of play," Bryant said. "We made the adjustment, took the lead and never let go."

Pau Gasol added 31 points and 15 rebounds for the Lakers (39-9), who were playing the fourth of six games on the road.

The Toronto Raptors got 24 points from recent starter Joey Graham, 22 and nine blocks from Jermaine O'Neal and 21 out of Andrea Bargnani. All Star Chris Bosh had 12 points, but departed early in the fourth quarter with a knee injury.

Mavericks 104, Blazers 99

In Dallas, Josh Howard scored 23 points to lead Dallas over Portland.

Jason Terry added 20 points, while Jason Kidd had 10 assists to move into fourth place on the career assist list, surpassing Oscar Robertson.

Portland slipped 2-1/2 games behind Northwest Division leader Denver.

Pistons 93, Heat 90

In Auburn Hills, Michigan, Rodney Stuckey hit two jump shots in the final 90 seconds to get Detroit home against Miami.

Stuckey finished with 18 points for the Pistons.

Bulls 107, Hornets 93

In New Orleans, the hosts slumped to their fourth straight loss, beaten by Chicago.

Derrick Rose scored 21 points, and Ben Gordon had 19 for the Bulls.

New Orleans star Chris Paul missed the game because of a strained right groin.

Magic 126, Clippers 96

In Orlando, Florida, Anthony Johnson had a season-high 25 points for Orlando in place of injured All-Star point guard Jameer Nelson, leading Orlando over Los Angeles.

Johnson took control in the Magic's first game since Nelson tore the labrum in his right shoulder, and doubled his regular-season career high with six 3-pointers. He was 6-for-8 from the beyond the arc and the Magic made 16 3-pointers.

The Clippers have lost seven straight.

Grizzlies 104, Rockets 93

In Memphis, Tennessee, O.J. Mayo piled on 32 points as Memphis comfortably beat Houston.

Rudy Gay had 18 points and nine rebounds for the Grizzlies.

Tracy McGrady led the Rockets with 21 points. Chinese center Yao Ming had 20 points and nine rebounds.

(Agencies via China Daily Feburary 6, 2009)

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