LeBron James still has hopes for new-look Cavaliers despite Wizards loss

Moments after a controversial review gave the Washington Wizards possession of what had originally been ruled a jump ball, the Cleveland Cavaliers surrendered a layup to Otto Porter Jr. off an inbounds play, which seemed to serve as the dagger of what was ultimately a 110-103 Washington win. The have won by an average of 15.3 points, outscoring their three foes 121.3-106.0 and outshooting them.527-.431.

Former general manager David Griffin had apparently been in constant communication with James throughout the previous three years, but Altman wasn't there during a long road trip in January.

The loss was the first in the last five games for the Cavaliers, who were on a four-game winning streak.

From an individual perspective, LBJ will be looking to repeat his performance from last night's loss to Washington.

Following up his All-Star Game MVP award, James finished with 32 points, nine rebounds and eight assists. Fellow young point guard Frank Ntilikina, who could see some starts as well, had seven points.

Chicago led by one after a pair of JJ Redick free throws with eight seconds left, but Philadelphia's Joel Embiid (30 points, 13 rebounds) came up with a steal and the Bulls' Denzel Valentine committed a foul on Simmons.

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In addition to the National Basketball Association committing to awarding an All-Star Game to Cleveland upon completion of the transformation project, the Cavs also extended their lease with Cuyahoga county, which owns and operates the building through the Gateway Economic Development Corporation, through 2034. Heading into the All-Star Break, Memphis dropped a shootout to the Oklahoma City Thunder, 121-114, at the FedExForum.

Kemba Walker scored 31 points as Charlotte pulled away in the fourth quarter against visiting Brooklyn.

Tonight's matchup between the Cavs and Grizzlies will be the second and final time these two teams meet in the 2017-18 regular season.

Last meeting: The Cavs won 116-111 on December 2. The Cavaliers had a 54-38 edge in points in the paint and scored 40 bench points. The Bucks have gone 5-2 in the seven games that point guard Malcolm Brogdon has been sidelined with a ruptured quad.

The biggest culprit of the Cavs' loss was the team's 3-point shooting, with Cleveland missing 27 of his 35 attempts from long-distance - many of which were wide-open.

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