James finished with 20 points, 15 assists and 12 rebounds to lead Cleveland to a 106-99 win over the Washington Wizards at Capital One Arena, his third straight triple-double and fourth during this win streak.
After a rough start to the year, the Cavaliers have now won 18 of their last 19 games to climb the standings in the Eastern Conference. John Wall appeared healthy in 32 minutes for Washington, but the loss dropped the squad to 16-14 on the year.
Kevin Love led the Cavaliers with 25 points while shooting 5-of-8 from beyond the arc in the win. However, James was the star in this one despite scoring only 20 points, showcasing ways to impact the game in a variety of ways.
ESPN Stats & Info noted his passing ability:
ESPN Stats & Info @ESPNStatsInfo
With his third-straight triple-double, LeBron James has 10 assists for the 5th straight game, the longest streak of his career. https://t.co/AOwYa6e33P2017-12-18 01:10:40
Of course, sometimes the numbers didn't tell the whole story, as the Cavs' Twitter account showed:
Cleveland Cavaliers @cavs
Touchdown in D.C. ! #AllForOne https://t.co/GnNqkB6HVu2017-12-18 01:04:19
He also made some key plays on the defensive end of the court, including this big block on Wall, as the NBA's Twitter account captured:
LeBron doing LeBron like things. #AllForOne https://t.co/yMrCzGnERM2017-12-18 01:08:13
Outside of the loss to the Indiana Pacers, Cleveland has been nearly flawless over the past few weeks, and James' play is a major reason.
The Wizards are still trying to get to full strength with Wall slowly recovering from his knee injury. He filled up the box score with 15 points, 10 rebounds, six assists and two blocks, although it wasn't enough to lead the team to its third straight win.
Meanwhile, Bradley Beal tried to pick up the slack with 27 points but needed 27 shots, shooting 4-of-13 from three-point range. Washington ended the night 12-of-33 from beyond the arc as a team.
Both teams were knocking down shots in the first half, battling back-and-forth to prevent either side from pulling away.
This nonchalant buzzer-beater from James ensured a 60-60 tie at the half:
Cleveland Cavaliers @cavs
Big time bucket. For the tie! #StriveForGreatness https://t.co/bvM7tcTTng2017-12-18 00:18:58
The game remained close through the fourth quarter, with Washington building an 89-87 advantage with about nine minutes remaining. However, an 8-0 run gave Cleveland control, and the squad never looked back.
Mike Scott scored 19 points off the bench to give the Wizards a chance, but no one could keep up with Love and James in this one.
Cleveland continues its difficult stretch with a road game against the Milwaukee Bucks on Tuesday. Washington will complete its four-game homestand Tuesday with a matchup against the New Orleans Pelicans.