NBA: Resurgent Cavaliers crush Knicks

(AFP) - Kyrie Irving's Madison Square Garden mojo continued on Wednesday (Dec 7) as he scored 28 points in the Cleveland Cavaliers' 126-94 National Basketball Association (NBA) rout of the New York Knicks.

Irving's scoring average of 28.4 points in six games at the iconic Manhattan venue is his highest scoring average among all NBA arenas.

"I've loved this place since I was a kid sitting in the nosebleed seats," Irving said.

"Every time I come out here I want to put on a show for the fans. I never take it for granted."

Cavs superstar LeBron James added 25 points and Kevin Love contributed 21 points as the reigning NBA champions followed up their 116-112 win over the Raptors in Toronto with a second road triumph.

The victories confirmed that the Cavaliers have put a three-game skid behind them.

It was the sixth time this season and the 16th time since the 2014-15 season that Irving, James and Love all scored at least 20 points in a game.

Cleveland, who improved to 15-5, poured in 22 three-pointers, and centre Tristan Thompson grabbed 20 rebounds for the second time in his career.

The Cavaliers have won six straight at Madison Square Garden and eight in a row overall against the Knicks.

With their latest win, they cooled off the hottest team in the Eastern Conference.

The Knicks had won nine of their previous 12 games, but showed their fatigue a night after a 114-103 victory over the Heat in Miami.

"We didn't have the same energy they did," said Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek.

"We're not a big, strong team, so we have to rely on our quickness and we weren't able to do that."

With point guard Derrick Rose still sidelined after back spasms forced him out against the Heat, Brandon Jennings filled in and scored 16 points for the Knicks.

Courtney Lee added 15 but veteran star Carmelo Anthony was limited to eight points in 23 minutes on the floor.

James' 19 first-half points, which helped the Cavs to a 63-48 half-time lead, were his most in a half this season.

He was all business after sparking comment by declining to stay with the rest of the team at the Trump SoHo hotel.

James, who backed Hillary Clinton in the US presidential race, insisted he was "not trying to make a statement" in opting not to stay in a hotel bearing the name of US President-elect Donald Trump.

"It's just my personal preference," he said.

"At the end of the day, I hope he's one of the best presidents ever, for all of our sakes - my family, for all of us. It's just my personal preference."