|Date of game: 12/12/2014
Recap: New Orleans vs. Cleveland
New Orleans, LA (SportsNetwork.com) - The New Orleans Pelicans handed the Cleveland Cavaliers their second straight loss, but LeBron James was on the floor this time.
The Pelicans were the ones without their star player.
Tyreke Evans had a season-high 31 points with 10 assists as the Pelicans defeated the Cavaliers 119-114 on Friday night.
Anthony Davis left in the first quarter with a chest contusion and did not return.
"To beat a team like that without AD (Davis) and have as many contributions across the board was special," Pelicans coach Monty Williams said.
Ryan Anderson poured in 30 points off the bench, while Jrue Holiday added 16 points and eight assists for New Orleans, which has won three of its last four games on the heels of a 1-5 stretch.
James recorded 19 of his 41 points in the opening frame. Kevin Love supplied 21 points and seven rebounds and Kyrie Irving provided 17 points and seven helpers for the Cavaliers.
James sat out Thursday's contest against Oklahoma City due to left knee soreness. The Thunder proceeded to snap Cleveland's eight-game winning streak.
"I felt good after the tests I was put through before the game," James said. "I just wanted to go out and help our team win and was were a little bit unsuccessful."
Cleveland trailed by as many as 19 late in the third, but Irving nailed a triple and fadeaway jumper on consecutive possessions to pull the Cavs within 106-99 with 3:46 left.
The Pelicans, though, netted the next six. Back-to-back Evans buckets preceded a Holiday floater to cap the spurt and extend their advantage to 112-99 with 2:17 to play.
Cleveland responded again, however, as Irving recorded a three-point play and hit a pull-up jumper before James Jones knocked down a right wing 3-pointer to whittle the deficit to 112-107 with 54.8 ticks on the clock.
Luke Babbitt provided the dagger with 39.1 seconds remaining at the other end with a straightaway triple.
The Pelicans took their commanding third-quarter advantage following a 12-2 surge during the latter stages of the period.
Earlier, the game was tied 33-33 following a quarter of play, but a 12-5 swing during the latter part of the second helped New Orleans to a 64-59 margin heading into the break.Game Notes
Davis had eight points on 4-of-4 shooting prior to departing ... The Cavaliers
fell to 2-6 against the Western Conference this year. One of those wins came
against New Orleans earlier this season ... The Pelicans shot 55.7 percent
(44-of-79) from the floor.