King James' Cleveland Cavaliers crush San Antonio Spurs 117-103 in statement win

 San Antonio Spurs guard Tony Parker (9) hugs Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) prior to their game in Cleveland.
San Antonio Spurs guard Tony Parker (9) hugs Cleveland Cavaliers forward LeBron James (23) prior to their game in Cleveland.PHOTO: REUTERS

CLEVELAND (AFP) - A nationally-televised marquee match-up between last year's Eastern conference champion Cleveland and the West's San Antonio Spurs belonged entirely to the Cavaliers.

LeBron James scored 29 points and the Cavs dominated San Antonio 117-103 to consolidate their spot atop the Eastern Conference with 34 victories in 46 games.

They have now won four straight since dropping their first game under new head coach Tyronn Lue, who took over a week ago after the surprise dismissal of David Blatt.

Going into the game, Cleveland was 0-3 against the top two teams in the West, having fallen at San Antonio earlier this month and lost twice to Golden State.

But they took full advantage of the absence of Spurs star Tim Duncan and the fact that San Antonio forward LaMarcus Aldridge was in foul trouble much of the night.

With their new-look offence firing, the Cavaliers shot 64 per cent in the second quarter and led 66-49 at halftime, completely dismembering the NBA's top defensive team.

San Antonio opened the third with an 8-0 scoring run, but their rally was quickly squelched by the Cavs, who had 21 points apiece from Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving.

Irving and backup point guard Matthew Dellavedova, an Australian, combined for the first 18 points of the fourth quarter as Cleveland powered to the win.

"We're just pushing the pace, pushing it every single night," said "King" James, whose Cavs have scored at least 114 points in four straight games.

"Coach Lue is getting on us every single day to keep the tempo going and we've been able to do that and not turn the ball over. So that's resulting in us playing some really good basketball so far."