PORTLAND, Ore., Jan. 19 (Ticker) --
Chalk up another milestone in
' short but stellar career.
James became the youngest player in league history to record a
triple-double with 27 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists as the
Cavaliers rolled to a 107-101 victory over the Portland Trail
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"First career triple-double, one of many to come, I'm sure,"
Cleveland coach Paul Silas
said. "He's been flirting with it for
a while now, tonight he got it."
Just 20 days into his 20th year, James made 11-of-16 shots and
provided four steals as the Cavaliers were barely threatened
after a big second-quarter run and improved to 2-2 on their
season-high six-game road trip.
"It's a relief," James said of his feat. "It feels great,
especially when you can get a win with it. It makes it extra
sweet. It was never a goal of mine to do, but once I kept
getting so close I wanted to just try and get over it."
The Trail Blazers started the game with a lot of energy and had
a 32-26 lead after Damon Stoudamire
made a 3-pointer to start
the second quarter. Cleveland then turned eight Portland
turnovers and five missed free throws into a 25-7 run and took a
James scored four points before sitting out much of the surge
but provided everything his team needed in the fourth quarter,
when the Trail Blazers tried to make a game of it.
James scored 11 points, grabbed three boards and dished out
three assists in the final 12 minutes. He either scored or
assisted on Cleveland's first five baskets and, after Portland
cut the deficit to 95-87 with just under four minutes left, sank
his first 3-pointer to push the lead back to 11.
"The assists are the best part of it because I'm getting my
teammates into the game and getting them easy baskets," James
said. "Important thing tonight is we got the win. We needed
this one. We came into a tough environment and got the win."
The second-year star broke the record held by Lamar Odom
was 20 years, 54 days when he posted a triple-double for the Los
Angeles Clippers on Dec. 30, 1999 -- James' 15th birthday.
James finished three assists shy of a triple-double when the
Cavaliers routed the Trail Blazers, 112-88, on Dec. 15.
"Man, that guy is great," Portland guard Nick Van Exel
. "He does
everything great out there -- passing, penetrating, shooting,
scored 21 points and grabbed 11 rebounds for
Cleveland, which has won eight of 11 overall.
"I knew that they were a little banged up with some of their
bigger guys and they played a hard game yesterday in
Sacramento," Ilgauskas said. "We were hoping that they would be
a little tired tonight."
Already without injured forwards Zach Randolph
, Darius Miles
, the Trail Blazers got just one minute from
center Theo Ratliff
, who left after committing two quick fouls.
He complained of a stomach virus and never returned.
Rookie James Thomas
used some rare minutes to pull down a
career-high 15 rebounds for Portland, which lost its fifth
Van Exel scored 28 points -- just two in the fourth -- and
Stoudamire added 27.
"It's frustrating in the sense that we kept losing, but it's
hard when you're this shorthanded," said Stoudamire, who scored
15 in the fourth quarter.
"It was the same story as earlier on our road trip," Blazers
coach Maurice Cheeks
said, referring to his team's recently
finished 1-5 stretch away from home. "We tried, but we were just